Malaysia Old History

By | January 3, 2023

Malaysia is an independent nation in Southeastern Asia. With the capital city of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia 2020 population is estimated at 32,366,010 according to countryaah. When Indian and Chinese traders came to the Malacca peninsula about 2,000 years ago, the Malays were there. At the beginning of the 15th century, Malacka was founded, which became an important port city. It was conquered by the Portuguese in the 16th century, in the 17th century by the Dutch and in 1795 by the British. Around 1896, the Federated States of Malaysia were created, which became independent in 1957 under the name of the Malaysian Federation.

Outside the Malacca peninsula, the southeast and southwest monsoon meets. Ancient sailing vessels on the road between India and China were often forced to stop in these waters, waiting for the wind to turn. From the 600s and several centuries onwards, the area was dominated by the Hindu-Indonesian kingdom Srivijaya, which was based in Sumatra. Islam came in the 1300s and 1400s with missionaries from India.

  • Comprehensive guide to and popular abbreviations of Malaysia, covering history, economy, and social conditions.

The modern history of the Malacca peninsula usually dates from the beginning of the 1400s when a Javanese prince founded the port city of Malacka. The Malacca Sultanate extended its control to most of the peninsula through a system of vassal states. In 1511 the capital Malacca was conquered by the Portuguese and in 1641 by the Dutch. For Malaysia political system, please check carswers.

From the late 18th century, the British sought to control the trade route to China through the Strait of Malacca. The Penang Island became a trading center under British control in 1786. In 1795 the British conquered Malacka and in 1819 the British East India Company was granted permission by the Sultan of Johore to establish a new trading town, Singapore. The three free trade cities Singapore, Malacka and Penang formed British Straits Settlements.

Malaya is formed

During British rule, several sultanates had long had a great measure of self-government. In 1896, four Sultanates were merged into one administrative unit: the Federated States of Malaysia, with Kuala Lumpur as its capital. Malaya was named in the British-dominated parts of the Malacca peninsula, except Singapore.

On the island of Borneo, the Sultan of Brunei had in 1841 installed a British adventurer as the first of the “white raids” to rule Sarawak for over a century. Later, the British Borneo Company gained control of Sabah. It was not until 1946 that Sabah and Sarawak became British crown colonies.

In the 1840s, the British discovered that there were large deposits of tin on the west coast of the Malacca peninsula. As locals did not want to work in the mines, Malaysian rulers encouraged the British to recruit workers from southern China.

Malaya soon emerged as one of the world’s leading producers of tin and later also of rubber. Workers from India and Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) were brought to the rubber plantations. The Malays were to a certain extent outside modern economic life.

Japanese occupation

Around New Year 1942, Japan invaded Malaya and Singapore. The British fled, while the Malaysian rulers largely chose to cooperate with the Japanese. Only some Chinese, agitated by rumors of the Japanese’s brutal progress in China, tried to seriously resist the occupants. The Chinese therefore became the people group that suffered the worst during the Japanese occupation.

Since the British administration was reintroduced in 1945, the British wanted to form a Union state of Malaya with equal rights for all the country’s peoples. The Malay elite rejected these plans and formed a party the following year, the United Malaysian National Organization (Umno), and entered into negotiations with the British. The Indians founded the Malaysian Indian Congress (MIC) the same year and the Chinese formed the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA) in 1949.

Malay Federation

In 1948, Malaya became a federation, with certain privileges for the Malays being enshrined in the constitution. Formally, all power came from the Sultans. The federation did not include Singapore, Sabah or Sarawak, which remained separate crown colonies.

Many Chinese were bitter about not being able to become full citizens. The Chinese-dominated Communist Party launched a guerrilla war against the British and the Federation. The war went on from 1948 to 1958 and led to the establishment of a political alliance between Umno, MCA and MIC.

The alliance won the first federal election in 1955, which was a good basis for the liberation from Britain. The Malaysian Federation gained full independence in 1957, but only in 1990 did the last guerrilla group give up the fight.



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Malaysia Old History