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358 AD–669 AD

The territory of Tarumanagara
Capital Sundapura (near Tugu, Jakarta and Bekasi)
Languages Sundanese, Sanskrit
Religion Hinduism, Buddhism, Sunda Wiwitan
Government Monarchy
 -  Established 358 AD
 -  Sriwijaya invasion in 650 AD 669 AD
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Tarumanagara or Taruma Kingdom or just Taruma is an early Sundanese Indianized kingdom, whose fifth-century ruler, Purnawarman, produced the earliest known inscriptions on Java island. The kingdom was not far from modern Jakarta, and according to Tugu inscription Purnavarman apparently built a canal that changed the course of the Cakung River, and drained a coastal area for agriculture and settlement. In his inscriptions, Purnavarman associated himself with Vishnu, and Brahmins ritually secured the hydraulic project.[1]

Tarumanagara existed between 358–669 AD. The earliest known written records of Tarumanagara existence are inscribed monument stones.[2] Inscribed stone is called prasasti in Indonesian language. A prasasti located in a river bed of Ciaruteun river, called Prasasti Ciaruteun, from the fifth century AD, written in Vengi letters (used in the Indian Pallava period) and in Sanskrit language, reports the most famous king of Tarumanagara:

Located nearby is the Prasasti Kebon Kopi I, also called Telapak Gadjah stone, with an inscription and the engraving of two large elephant footprints. The inscription read: These elephant foot soles, akin to those of the strong Airwata (elephant, which God Indra used to ride), belongs to Tarumanagara King who is successful and full of control.

Not only stones testify of the existence of King Purnawarman and his Tarumanagara kingdom. There are also Chinese historical sources, since Tarumanagara maintained extended trade and diplomatic relations in the territory stretching between India and China. The Chinese Buddhist Monk Fa Xian reported in his book fo-kuo-chi (414 CE) that he stayed on the island of Ye-po-ti (Chinese spelling of Javadvipa), most probably the western part of Java island, for six months, from December 412 until May 413 CE. He reported that the Law of Buddha was not much known, but that the Brahmans (Hinduism) flourished, and heretics (animists) too.

The kingdom was mentioned in the annals of the Sui dynasty, the king of To-lo-mo (Taruma) has sent diplomatic mission, which arrived in China in 528 and 535 CE. It was mentioned that the kingdom is located far south of China. The annals of Tang dynasty also mentioned in the year 666 and 669 the envoys of To-lo-mo has visited the court of Tang.


  • First rulers 1
  • Age of Purnawarman 2
  • Kings after Purnawarman 3
  • Decline 4
  • List of rulers 5
  • References 6
  • See also 7

First rulers

1600-year-old stone inscription from the era of Purnawarman, king of Tarumanagara, founded in Tugu sub-district of Jakarta.

According to the book Nusantara, Maharshi Rajadirajaguru Jayasingawarman founded the Tarumanagara kingdom in 358 CE. Jayasingawarman originated from Salankayana, India that collapsed after the invasion of Samudragupta from Gupta Empire. After re-settling in Western Java, he married a Sundanese princess daughter of King Dewawarman VIII of Salakanagara.[3] He died in 382 CE and was buried at the bank of Kali Gomati river (present-day Bekasi city). His son, Dharmayawarman ruled from 382 to 395 CE. His burial site is at Chandrabaga river. His grandson Purnawarman was the third king of Tarumanagara and reigned from 395 to 434 CE.

Age of Purnawarman

Book Nusantara, parwa II sarga 3 (page 159 – 162) notes that under the reign of King Purnawarman, Tarumanagara held control over 48 small kingdoms with area stretching from Salakanagara or Rajatapura to Purwalingga (current city of Purbalingga in Central Java Province). Traditionally Cipamali river (Brebes river) was the border between Sunda and Java.

In 397 AD, King Purnawarman established a new capital city for the kingdom, located near to a beach, called Sunda Pura meaning Holy Town or Pure Town. Thus, word “Sunda” was introduced for the first time by King Purnawarman in 397. Sunda Pura could have been near present day Tugu (North Jakarta), or near present day Bekasi. He left seven memorial stones with inscriptions bearing his name spread across current Banten and West Java provinces. The prasasti tugu, which is a few years older than the Parasasti Ciaruteun, is considered the oldest of all the inscriptions.

There are more stones with inscriptions from the time of king Purnawarman, some close to Bogor city. They are Prasasti Muara Cianten, Prasasti Pasir Awi, Prasasti Cidanghiang, and Parasasti Jambu. Prasasti Cidanghiang (sits further to the west at Lebak in the Pandeglang area), consisting of two lines, proclaiming Purnawarman as the standard for rulers around the world. Prasasti Jambu, with a two-line inscription in Pallava/Sanskrit, bears the large footprints of the king. The inscription translates as:

Kings after Purnawarman

Two Vishnu statues from Cibuaya, Karawang, West Java. Tarumanagara c. 7th-8th century CE. The tubular crown bears similarities with Cambodian Khmer art.

Purnawarman probably is the most well-known king of Tarumanagara because he produced quite a numbers of well documented inscriptions. The records about Tarumanagara's later kings were scarce and obscure, most were known from later manuscripts and local traditions.

Later series of Tarumanagara kings are only known from their names, all bears the name warman (Sanskrit: varman means "shield" or "protector") which suggests that all of them belongs in the same dynasty.

A rather detailed information was known about King Suryawarman that ruled from 535 to 561 CE. King Suryawarman established a new capital city eastward and left Sundapura and its communities to preserve their own order. Then, Sundapura become a new smaller kingdom called Sunda Sambawa which was under control of Tarumanagara. Before the Suryavarman reigned Tarumanagara, Manikmaya, his son in-law, in 526, left Sundapura went southeastward and established Kendan, a new kingdom currently in Nagreg area, near modern Garut city.

Kertawarman ruled circa 561 to 628 CE. During this period the grandson of Manikmaya, Wretikandayun, in 612, established Galuh Kingdom, southeast of current Garut with its capital city located in Banjar Pataruman. Kertawarman's successor, King Linggawarman ruled from 628 to 650, he however produced no male heir. Linggawarman's eldest daughter Manasih, married to Tarusbawa, ruler of Sunda Sembawa. While the second daughter of King Linggawarman, Princess Sobakancana, married Dapunta Hyang Sri Jayanasa, who later established the Srivijaya kingdom.


King Tarusbawa of Sunda Sembawa (Tarumanagara's vassal) married to Manasih, the eldest daughter of Linggawarman, thus made him the successor of Linggawarman. Tarusbawa however was more interested to reestablish his own home kingdom Sundapura, as his new capital and abandoning Tarumanagara's capital.

This event was made as a reason by king Wretikandayun (monarchic founder of Galuh) to dissociate Galuh from Tarumanagara. He demanded King Tarusbawa to divide Tarumanagara territory into two parts. Galuh got a support from Kalingga kingdom (the first kingdom in Central Java) to separate from Tarumanagara because Galuh and Kalingga had made an alliance through dynastic marriage; a son of King Wretikandayun married Parwati (a daughter of Queen Shima) from Kalingga and Sana alias Bratasenawa alias Sena (a grandson of King Wretikandayun) married Sanaha (a granddaughter of Queen Sima). In a weak position and wishing to avoid civil war, the young King Tarusbawa accepted the request of old King Wretikandayun.

After 670, Tarumanagara was divided into two kingdoms: Sunda Kingdom and Galuh Kingdom with the Citarum river as the boundary. Then Galuh Kingdom comprised many vassal kingdoms which covered areas of present-day West and present-day Central Java Provinces.

According to 7th century Kota Kapur inscription, Srivijaya, centered in today Palembang, South Sumatra, launched a military expedition against Bhumi Jawa, the period coincides with the decline of Tarumanagara. It is very likely that Tarumanagara kingdom was attacked and defeated by Srivijaya around 686 CE. The pretext behind Srivijayan campaign against Tarumanagara was obscure, however it was probably because of Jayanasa's own claim to Tarumanagara's throne, afterall his wife, Sobakancana, is the daughter of Linggawarman, the late king of Tarumanagara. After this naval invasion, Tarumanegara's influence began to decline.

Devastated by Srivijayan invasion, King Tarusbawa then moved further inland to find a refuge in the south and established a new capital near the Cipakancilan river upstream (today in modern Bogor). It seems that he left the coastal areas of port of Sunda and Kalapa (today coastal areas of modern Banten and Jakarta) under Srivijayan mandala's control. This capital centuries later became the city of Pakuan Pajajaran (or shortly called Pakuan or Pajajaran). King Tarusbawa becomes the predecessor of Sunda kings.

List of rulers

  • Jayasingawarman, 358 - 382
  • Dharmayawarman, 382 to 395. His burial site is at Chandrabaga river.
  • Purnawarman, 395 - 434. Produced large numbers of inscriptions
  • Wisnuwarman, 434 - 455
  • Indrawarman, 455 - 515
  • Candrawarman, 515 - 535
  • Suryawarman, 535 - 561. Established new capital, left old capital of Sundapura, a new settlement was established inland in Kendan near modern Garut
  • Kertawarman, 561 - 628. Establishment of Tarumanagara's colony Galuh Kingdom in 612 by Wretikandayun, the grandson of Manikmaya.
  • Linggawarman, 628 - 650. Marriage arrangement with Dapunta Hyang Sri Jayanasa of Srivijaya and the second daughter of King Linggawarman, Princess Sobakancana.
  • Tarusbawa, circa 670 - 690. Disintegration of Tarumanagara into Sunda Kingdom and Galuh Kingdom and independence of Galuh. Srivijayan invasion according to Kota Kapur inscription.


  1. ^ Mary Somers Heidhues. Southeast Asia: A Concise History. London: Thames and Hudson, 2000. pp. 45 and 63.
  2. ^ Bogor City: Bogor Inscription
  3. ^ Garis Waktu Sejarah Nusantara
  • Book Nusantara, Chapter II, Sub-chapter 3 (page 159 – 162)
  • Edi S. Ekadjati, Kebudayaan Sunda Zaman Pajajaran, Jilid 2, Pustaka Jaya, 2005
  • (1915, “Maharadja Cri Djajabhoepathi, Soenda’s Oudst Bekende Vorst”, TBG, 57. Batavia: BGKW, page 201-219)

See also

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