Ancient Javanese Women during the Majapahit period (14th – 15th centuries CE): An Iconographic Study based on the Temple Reliefs | Perempuan Jawa Kuno periode Majapahit (Abad ke-14 – 15 Masehi): Suatu tinjauan Ikonografi terhadap Relief Candi

Authors

  • Atina Winaya The National Research Center of Archaeology Indonesia https://orcid.org/
  • Agus Aris Munandar Department of Archaeology Universitas Indonesia

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.26721/spafajournal.2021.v5.658

Keywords:

temple, relief, Java, women

Abstract

The idea of Javanese women's images in the past is more known through literature. Some stories mention them in beautiful poetic words and could be imagined divergently by different people. At the same time, the images of Javanese women could be seen from the temple reliefs. It may be more concrete as its material. The Majapahit period that lasts from 14th to 15th centuries provides quite complete data such as artifactual and textual resources that sufficiently support to reveal the depiction of ancient Javanese women at that time. The Majapahit temples have lots of reliefs that portray the women in the daily lives. These data are useful in an attempt to interpret the depiction of the women images in the Majapahit period. This study using iconographic analysis such as observation, description, and classification. The analysis results are compared to the terracotta figurines and sculptures from the same period. Last, the results are compared to the ancient literature from the same period as well. The final results show a regular pattern which is concluded as the characteristics of the Majapahit women. Not only the images themselves, but the meaning behind them also show that the women in the Majapahit era are more present than before and the way to visualize them is more reliable.
Gagasan mengenai penggambaran perempuan Jawa kuno lebih banyak diketahui melalui karya sastra yang berasal dari masa lampau. Beberapa kisah menceritakan mengenai figur mereka melalui narasi yang puitis dan dapat dipahami secara berbeda oleh setiap orang. Bersamaan dengan itu, penggambaran perempuan Jawa kuno juga dapat dilihat pada relief-relief candi. Figurnya nampak lebih konkrit karena digambarkan pada objek material. Periode Majapahit yang berlangsung pada abad ke-14 hingga 15 Masehi menyediakan data yang cukup lengkap meliputi artefak dan sumber tertulis yang dapat digunakan untuk mengungkap penggambaran perempuan di masa Jawa kuno. Candi-candi yang dibangun pada periode Majapahit memiliki sejumlah relief yang menggambarkan perempuan di dalam kehidupan sehari-hari. Data dibandingkan dengan sumber tertulis sezaman. Hasil penelitian memperlihatkan pola yang teratur dan berulang di dalam penggambaran perempuan pada relief candi. Tidak hanya dari segi visualnya saja, namun makna di baliknya juga menunjukkan bahwa perempuan pada periode Majapahit lebih nampak dibandingkan periode sebelumnya, dan cara menggambarkannya lebih bisa diandalkan.

Several female figures in the Panji story on Batur Pendopo II Panataran Temple reliefs. Source: 2017 photo by Atina Winaya.

Downloads

Published

2021-06-18

How to Cite

Winaya, A. and Munandar, A. A. (2021) “Ancient Javanese Women during the Majapahit period (14th – 15th centuries CE): An Iconographic Study based on the Temple Reliefs | Perempuan Jawa Kuno periode Majapahit (Abad ke-14 – 15 Masehi): Suatu tinjauan Ikonografi terhadap Relief Candi”, SPAFA Journal, 5. doi: 10.26721/spafajournal.2021.v5.658.

Issue

Section

Research Articles