The Curse of King Mintin

Kutukan Raja Mintin | Edisi Indonesia

Folklore from Central Kalimantan

A long time ago in Kahayan Hilir, Central Kalimantan, there was an island named Mintin. The people in the island lived peacefully. The king of the island, King Mintin, was wise. He loved his people very much.

However, soon the happiness was ended. The kingdom was mourning. The queen just passed away. The king was sad and decided to leave the palace and went to another island. He asked his twin sons, Naga and Buaya, to lead the kingdom while he was away.

At first, Naga and Buaya led the kingdom wisely. They did their father’s advice to them. Unfortunately, it did not last long.

Naga and Buaya had different personalities. Naga was ignorant to the people and loved parties, while Buaya was very caring and loving to the people. Buaya then asked Naga to stop his bad habits.

Naga was angry. He asked Buaya not to disturb him. Buaya was also angry. He reminded Naga about their father’s advice

“Father is not here! And you are not my father, why do I have listen to you?” said Naga.

Both of them were angry and could not control themselves. They were fighting. The fighting was getting bigger and it changed into a civil war. It was because the soldiers were involved. The soldiers were divided into two parts.

Some of them supported Naga and the other soldiers supported Buaya. The people of Mintin Island were suffering great pain. Because of the war, they could not live peacefully. Some of them were very hungry and suffered from illnesses. Mintin Island was in chaos!

The king finally heard the war. He decided to go back to Mintin Island. When he arrived, he immediately asked his twin sons to stop the war. The king was really angry.

“I’m very disappointed with you, sons. I trusted you to take care of this kingdom. But you have failed. I don’t care who is right or wrong. Both of you will be punished!” said the king.

He then continued.

“Buaya, I know you are a good son. You are wise and love the people. But you cannot control your emotions. Buaya, you have fewer mistakes than Naga. But I still have to punish you. I curse you into a crocodile. You can stay here in Mintin Island and your job is to take care of the people,” said the king.

He then talked to Naga.

“You have more mistakes. So, the punishment is bigger. I curse you into a dragon. You are not allowed to stay here. Go away and live in other place!” asked the king.

Right after the king finished his last words, heavy storm attacked Mintin Island. Buaya and Naga slowly changed. Buaya became a crocodile and Naga became a dragon. ***

Guardian Figure in the form of a Water Snake or Dragon
with the Wings of a Sacred Hornbill Ironwood with traces of pigment.
Ngaju Dayak, West Kalimantan, Borneo Island, Indonesia. 19th century

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