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Prahu Malay

penjajap, vessels, vessel, ship, light, pirate, kakap, carries and pirates

PRAH.U. MALAY. A ship or lugger ; also written Prow. The boats of the Straits of Malacca, China, Archipelago, are the prahu, sampan, lorcha, pukat, and tong-kong or ting king. In the Eastern Archipelago, the generic name for a boat or vessel, large or small, is prahu, a word almost naturalized in the European languages. It belongs equally to the Malay and Javanese languages, and from these has been very widely spread t:others, extending as a synonym to the principal Philippine tongues. The usual name for a canoe or skiff, both in Malay and Javanese, is sampan. The large vessels which the natives of the Archipelago used in war or trade were called by then) Jung, which is the word corrupted junk that Europeans applied to the large vessels of the Chinese, of which the proper name is wang-kang. For a square-rigged vessel or ship, the natives have borrowed the word kapal from the Telino. people. Names vary with forms of vessels and the uses to which they are put, and these again differ with nations or tribes so as to be innumerable. The most common pirate vessels made use of among the floating communities from the Straits to the south-eastern groups, are the penjajap and kakap, with padua kan, and Malay boats of various size and con struction.

The penjajap is a prahu of light build, straight, and very long, of various dimensions, and carry ing usually two masts, with square kajan This boat is entirely open, except that aft is a kind of awning, under which the head-man sits, and where the magazine of arms and ammunition is stowed away. In front it carries two guns of greater or less calibre, of which the muzzles peeli through. a wooden bulwark, al to th0' line of the keel. Penjajap of large size carry, in addition to these, some swivel pieceFes mounted along the timber parapet ; while boalle of inferior tonnage are armed only with two lelah, elevated on a beam or upright. From twenty to thirty rowers, sitting on benches well covered with mats, communicate to the vessel with their short a steady and rapid motion, the more swift ni proportion as the prahu is small. Large ones, therefore, are often left hidden in some creek or little maze of islets, while the light skiffs, flying through the water, proceed on their marauding errand.

The kakap prahu is a small light boat, provided with a rudder oar, but with no other oars or sculls. It carries onlyl one mast, with a single quadrangular sail. Like the penjajap, it is built of very buoyant timber, the planks being held together by wooden pins, and lashed with rattans. The pirate never goes to sea with a kakap alone, and the voyager may be sure, whenever he descries a kakap, that a penjajap is not far behind, moving along perhaps in the shadow of the high coast, or lurking behind some island, or lying within the seclusion of some woody creek. Eight

or ten of the best fighters arc usually chosen to man these light skiffs, which remind us of those flying prahus of the Ladrones described bya French voyager in a note to Sonnerat. In calm weather, the pirates row in these buoyant galleys along the shore, or mount the small rivers, confiding in their agility, and knowing well that if surprised they may fly into the woods, bear their little skiff with them, and launch it again at some spot uuknown to their pursuers.

The paduakan are native vessels having a single mast in the form of a tripod, and carrying a large lateen sail of mat. They are from twenty to fifty tons burden, and of great beam, with lofty sides, and little hold in the water. They are steered by two Thug rudders, which are lifted up when the vessel is moored or passing through a shallow.

The ordinary prahus made use of by the Malay pirates at the present day are from eight to ten tons burden, very well manned, and exceedingly fast. Usually they are armed in the bows, centre, and stern with swivel pieces.

A second-class Illanun pirate prahu of Min danao carries a crew of about GO men. It has a stage or platform suspended to the mast, with grappling hooks attached to the end, which is used as a bridge for boarding a prize.

The first-class Illanun pirate prahu of Mindanao carries a crew of 100 men or thereabouts. In this description of vessel, the tripod mast, the two after feet of which work on hinges, is used as a bridge in boarding. In May 1843, the English whaler Sarah. Elizabeth, Captain Bellinghurst, while at Amfuang, with 2 officers and 14 men on shore cutting spars, was attacked by 5 large and several smaller Illanun prahus, the crews of which, after killing, taking, or dispersing the party em ployed on shore, boarded the ship, the captain and the remainder of the crew, who were taken by surprise, escaping to sea in the whale-boats. The pirates, after plundering the ship, burnt her to the water's edge, in which state she was found by three other whalers that had been met with by Captain Bellinghurst in the offing, and had ( accompanied him for the purpose of rescuing his t ship from the pirates. A full account of this etransaetion will be found in the Moniteur des for 1847-48, pp. 34,35, by Jankpeer Comets iKle Groot, who was during several years Resident of the neighbouring settlement of Rhin, and after wards secretary-general to the Colonial Department of Holland.—kof j's lleport,18.11; Earl's l'oya9e of the Doorya, !iota bJ ; St. John'. Archipelayo, p. 182 ; Sonnerat, royage, p. 139.