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Legend About Lady Bandir

Legend About a Woman Named Lady Bandir
(Sumatra, Indonesia)

I'm going to tell you a story about a woman named Lady Bandir.

There were two kingdoms in Sumatra. The names of the kingdoms were east kingdom and west kingdom. Once, the king who ruled in the east kingdom married to the sister of the king of west kingdom.

Several years later a baby girl was born, she was named “Dayang (lady) Bandir”, seven years later a boy was born and named Sandean Raja. When they were just children, the father of Dayang Bandir and Sandean Raja passed away.

With the death of the king of east kingdom, the throne was left empty with no one to rule. Sandean Raja was too young and therefore unable to take his father’s place as a king. Then, the palace assembly appointed uncle Kareang to rule the kingdom. Dayang Bandir planned to protect sacred objects so that they would not fall to her uncle’s hand who temporarily replaces the government.

“Hmmm… I must save these objects so that it will not fall into my uncle’s hand, later brother Sandean Raja who will have rights of these sacred objects,” Dayang Bandir mumbles.

Not long, uncle Kareang found that the sacred objects were kept by Dayang Bandir. He urged Dayang Bandir to hand them over. 

“Just you watch! If you don’t hand over those objects, your life will be danger!" Uncle Kareang threatened Dayang Bandir.

But Dayang Bandir persistently refused to hand the sacred objects. Annoyed, uncle Kareang gave order to banish Dayang Bandir and Sandean Raja into the forest.

When they reached the forest, uncle Kareang tied Dayang Bandir on top of a tree so that her brother, Sandean Raja, could not reach her. Sandean Raja cried and cried until his tears dried. Sandean Raja tried to free his sister. But he could no climb the tree; every time he tried he always fall down. There were scratches and wounds all over his body.

“Let me bear uncle’s cruelty,” said Dayang Bandir weak. “If you are hungry, eat the tips of leaves around you,” Dayang Bandir told her hungry brother.

After several days tied up on a tree, Dayang Bandir finally started to look weak and drew her last breath.

“So cruel my uncle is !” Sandean Raja swore. He continued living all by himself in the forest for several years until he became a strong and courageous young man.

When he was in the forest, Dayang Bandir’s spirit always accompanies him.

“I hope you would meet king Sorma as soon as possible,” spirit Dayang Bandir whispered to Sandean Raja. King Sorma was the younger brother of Sandean Raja’s mother. Sandean Raja successfully got out of the forest and directly head for west kingdom territory to meet king Sorma.

“Pardon me, your majesty king Sorma. I am Sandean Raja.The crown prince of east kingdom,” said Sandean Raja.

King sorma was shocked to hear what Sandean Raja said, because the king heard that Sandean Raja and Dayang Bandir have died.

To prove that Sandean Raja was truly his nephew, Sandean Raja was tested to move a living tree from the forest to the palace. Next test, Sandean Raja was required to clear a forest area to be used as field.

The task was well completed by Sandean Raja. Next, Sandean Raja was instructed to build a great palace called “Rumah Bolon” and he successfully completed the palace in three days. King Sorma still refused to admit Sandean Raja as his nephew before he passes the final test. That was, to point the king’s daughter among several girls in a very dark room. Sandean Raja was worried he cannot pass the final test.

“Do not worry your self, I will help you,” Dayang Bandir’s spirit’s whispered.

Finally Sandean Raja successfully touched the princess’ head among other girls who sit with their knees bent. For his success, Sandean Raja was admitted the king’s Sorma’s nephew and married with his daughter. One year later, Sandean Raja and west kingdom army attacked east kingdom ruled by his uncle king Kareang.

In a short time, east kingdom was conquered and king Kareang was killed by Sandean Raja. East kingdom then ruled by Sandean Raja. In the end, Sandean Raja was crowned as king of east kingdom and lived happily with his wife and people.


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