5 Most Popular Legends in Indonesia

The Most Popular Legends in Indonesia – Our country has legends that are not small in number and spread throughout Indonesia. In the legends indirectly gives the reader a teaching on commendable matters. Even some families, also make legends or folklore as bedtime stories.

Most of the legends circulating throughout Indonesia tell about the origins of an area. However, there are also legends that tell about the existence of stories of human life in general. Then, what are the most popular legends in Indonesia? What is the content of the story in the popular legend Come on, see the following explanation of popular legends in Indonesia!

1. The Legend of the Pening Swamp

Rawa Pening is the name of a large swamp located in Semarang Regency, Central Java. In a legend that has been spread for generations, at the bottom of the Pening Swamp there is a huge dragon named Baru Klinting. The huge dragon guards the Pening Swamp and the surrounding environment.

The legend about the occurrence of Rawa Pening tells the story of a small child named Baru Klinting and has a strange face, which is in the form of a half-dragon and half-human . Only then was Klinting required to hermitage by wrapping his dragon’s body around the top of Mount Telomoyo.

Coincidentally, at that time, the surrounding residents were holding a big party. The residents went to the forest to look for game animals, but did not find any game animals. While they were resting by sitting on a tree that had collapsed, one of the residents fiddled with his knife by sticking a knife into the tree. Suddenly, the tree splashed blood. Suddenly, all the residents were confused and crowded to find out what was behind the tree.

As it turned out, it was the dragon body of Baru Klinting who was ascetic. Without further ado, the dragon’s body was finally sliced by the residents to take home.

Only then, Klinting, who was unable to complete his ascetic activities, finally turned into a strange human being. Then, he walked to the party to ask them for a little food. Unfortunately, the arrival of Baru Klinting actually received rejection and ridicule from the residents.

There was only one resident who helped and fed Baru Klinting, an old grandmother. After eating the food given by the old grandmother, Baru Klinting advised him to immediately prepare the boat and oars. As a result of the arrogance of these residents, Baru Klinting stuck a stick on the ground and made a challenge to the residents to revoke the lidi. Miraculously,  no one managed to pull the lidi off the ground and only Baru Klinting could do it.

Suddenly, water appeared from the hole of the former stick. The water that was sprayed out over time became heavier and heavier and became a flood. The old grandmother who remembered the message from Baru Klinting immediately saved herself using the boat and oars that had been prepared in advance.

The flood eventually became a large puddle and formed a swamp that submerged the village with its proud citizens. Only the old grandmother survived the disaster and gave the name of the swamp to “Rawa Pening“. ” Pening” means “clear“, because at that time, the puddles were clear in color.


2. Malin Kundang

Indonesian children must know this legend that originated from Padang, West Sumatra. Yep, this legend tells about a child named Malin who was cursed to be a stone due to disobedience to his mother.

It started from Malin’s desire to migrate to other areas for a better life. This desire was initially opposed by his mother because he was not willing to part with his only child. However, in the end, the mother also allowed Malin to wander and advised her to always remember her mother in the village.

Malin set off to wander on a ship. After a few years later, Malin came back to his village and has become a rich man. Accompanied by his beautiful wife and several merchant ships that belonged to him.

Hearing the news that Malin had come back, naturally made the mother happy and went straight over and hugged Malin. The wife was surprised because suddenly there was a shabby old woman hugging her husband and claiming that she was the mother of Malin.

Unfortunately, Malin didn’t want to admit the mother and instead pushed her to the ground. Malin yelled and scolded the mother with words that hurt the mother’s heart. As a result of the snapping from Malin, of course the mother felt sad and angry. He did not expect that Malin, his only child, turned into a child of lawlessness. Later, the Mother pleaded with God to give Malin doom by turning it into stone.

Suddenly, the wind and lightning thundered to the point of destroying the Malin ship. Soon, Malin Kundang’s body was struck by lightning and became a stone.

3. Cucumber Mas

The next popular legend is titled Timun Mas which originated from Central Java. This legend tells about the agreement between a pair of farmers and a green giant commonly called Buto Ijo.

At that time, a pair of peasants had been married for many years and had not been blessed with a child. The pair of farmers have been praying to God constantly to be given a blessing. One day, their prayers were heard by Buto Ijo and gave them an offer to acquire children. You do this by giving a cucumber seed to plant, but on the condition that the child will be taken back by Buto Ijo at the age of 17. Finally, the offer was approved by a pair of farmers.

Soon, the seeds were planted until they bore fruit into a large cucumber fruit and when it was split there was a baby girl, who was later named Timun Mas. For so many years, the three of them lived in threes until they were unaware that Timun Mas was 17 years old. The farmer’s wife or the mother of Timun Mas is not willing if she has to part with her child.

Finally, it was time for Buto Ijo to come to collect a promise to the pair of farmers. Unfortunately, they broke their promise by telling Timun Mas to run to save himself. Before Timun Mas ran, he was equipped with 3 magical objects, namely needles, salt, and shrimp paste.

During the chase, three magical objects turned out to really save Timun Mas from Buto Ijo. Terasi is Timun Mas’s savior because when he threw it at Buto Ijo, the shrimp paste suddenly turned into mud. Finally, Buto Ijo sank into the mud.

4. The Legend of Lake Toba

Lake Toba is a famous lake located in North Sumatra. This legend tells about a man named Toba who falls in love with a goldfish.

One day, Toba was about to fish in the river and saw a fish with beautiful golden scales . Toba immediately caught the fish and suddenly the fish changed its form into a beautiful woman.

Toba also fell in love with the goldfish’s daughter and asked her to get married. The fish princess agreed to it on the condition that Toba must not tell anyone about his identity.

After marriage, they were blessed with a son who was later named Samosir. Their lives were very harmonious and Samosir grew up to be a good boy. One day, Mrs. Samosir asked her son to deliver food to Toba who was working in the field. Samosir obeyed the order and set off for the field. As it turned out, the distance between the house and the field was very far and Samosir ate the provisions that should have been intended for Toba.

When he reached the field, Samosir apologized to his father that he had eaten the provisions. Toba, who was exhausted and starving at the time, was naturally angry. In his anger, Toba spontaneously shouts that Samosir is a fish cub.

Just suddenly, the sky darkened and it rained heavily for many days. It was a sign to Toba had broken his promise to the fish princess. The rain managed to give rise to a large lake and submerge Toba, which was later referred to as Lake Toba.

Meanwhile, his son, Samosir, ran to an island and the island was eventually named Samosir Island.

5. Conch Mas

The legend titled Keong Mas originated from East Java. In this legend it tells about a royal princess who was cursed to be a conch with her golden shell.

At that time, there lived a king who had two beautiful daughters, named Dewi Galuh and Candra Kirana. They live happily and well-off lives. One time, there came a handsome prince named Raden Inu Kertapati who was about to propose to one of the King’s daughters, namely Candra Kirana.

However, the application process made Dewi Galuh envious because she had put her heart in love with Raden Inu Kertapati. The feeling of envy develops into a feeling of hatred. Until one day, Goddess Galuh meets the witch and asks her to bewitch Candra Kirana into something disgusting.

Finally , the curse made Candra Kirana transform into a gold snail and her marriage to Raden Inu Kertapati failed. After successfully bewitching Candra Kirana, the witch immediately threw her, which in the form of a gold conch , into the river. The witch shouts that Candra Kirana’s curse will disappear if she is reunited with Prince Kertapati.

For many years, Candra Kirana, which in the form of a gold snail, lived in the bottom of the river. Until one day, there was a grandmother who was fishing in the middle of the river. Finally, the golden snail managed to get stuck in the grandmother’s net. The grandmother, who was amazed and amazed at the gold color in the shell of Keong Mas, also intended to take it home and keep it in a jug.

The next day, the Grandmother returned to the river to fish. However, he did not get a single fish and finally decided to return home. After arriving home, the grandmother was surprised because she saw that there were many delicious foods served on the table and the house was already clean. This continued to happen every day, until finally the grandmother decided to make a plan.

The Grandmother planned to pretend to go to the river as usual, when in fact she went back to the house and peeked to find out who had done the noble thing.

Shocked not to play the grandmother when she knew that the gold snail stored in the jug changed its form into a beautiful princess. Finally, the grandmother immediately went to Candra Kirana and asked about her origins. Candra Kirana also explained who he is and the reason why he can change form like this. Meanwhile, Prince Kertapati is still constantly looking for Candra Kirana because he believes that he is still alive. In fact, Prince Kertapati promised not to return to the kingdom before he could reinvent Candra Kirana.

The witch learned of this eventually disguised herself as a crow and approached Prince Kertapati. Prince Kertapati thought that the crow was a clue, therefore, he followed the instructions of the crow. However, the clue turned out to be wrong and caused Prince Kertapati to go astray.

On the way, Prince Kertapati ran out of provisions and luckily he saw a house. Without further ado, Prince Kertapati went straight to the house and asked for a glass of water. Prince Kertapati did not know that it was the grandmother’s house and when he arrived, he saw Candra Kirana cooking.

Suddenly Prince Kertapati shouted in excitement because he managed to find Candra Kirana. Eventually, the gold snail curse disappeared and they returned to the kingdom. Not to forget, they brought the Grandmother with them to come to the kingdom. Candra Kirana also explained the evil deeds done by Goddess Galuh to the King.

The king was immediately enraged and gave punishment to Goddess Galuh. Goddess Galuh felt terrified and fled into the woods. Eventually, Prince Kertapati and Candra Kirana decided to get married and they lived happily in the kingdom.

Well, those were some of the most popular legends in Indonesia. In addition to these five legends, there are many more, you know… Call it the Legend of Garlic Onion, the Legend of Sangkuriang, the Legend of Roro Jonggrang, the Legend of Ande-Ande Lumut, the Legend of the Weeping Stone, the Legend of lutung Kasarung, the Legend of Jaka Tarub, and many more . These legends are a form of oral literature handed down by the ancestors as entertainers as well as advice about life. As a younger generation, we must not forget about the existence of these legends…



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