(THE PERPATIH CUSTOM OF NEGERI SEMBILAN: THE ENTHRONEMENT CEREMONIAL CUSTOM)
Introduction / History / Origins / Features
The Kerjan or Enthronement ceremony is compulsory for the proclamation of the appointment of the new DatoBendahara Luak or Dato Lembaga Negeri Sembilan or the Negeri Sembilan Board of Dato. The Board of Dato Ceremonial Custom Committee will obtain a consensus for a suitable date to hold the ceremony at the Penghulu Luka Audience Hall.
Those required to attend on the proclamation day are the Supervisor of Ceremonial Custom of the Negeri Sembilan Seri Menanti Palace as representative of His Royal Highness Yang di-Pertuan Besar Negeri Sembilan, District Officers, District Religious Officers, District Police Chiefs and government officers as government representatives, as well as relatives of the appointee.
The new Dato is bathed with lime juice on a three-tiered chair to signify that the Dato is now cleansed. Then the Dato adorns a Malay attire and is seated on the Tilam Pandak (a mattress) at the house verandah. A feast is held on a gotong-royong (working together) basis with the slaughtering of a cow of which the head is displayed to the public.
Preparations for the Ceremony
The preparations for the ceremony cover decorating the Audience Hall as follows:
The Area Above the Audience Hall:
Black and white cloths are hung on the middle hall pillars. Other pillars are wrapped with colored cloths. Curtains called Tabir Langit (Sky Curtain) and Tabir Lingkung (Encircling Curtain) are also hung.
The curtain Tabir Lingkung covers the whole verandah while the curtain Tabir Langit adorns the porch and at the hall entrance. The porch is also adorned with various cushions and small pillows, including the Tilam Pandak, the mattress on which the new Dato sits.
The Area Below the Audience Hall:
At the end of the area are altogether three pairs of pennants in the following positions: On the right is a white flag, on the left is a black flag while in the middle is a black and white flag with sharp edges and a royal umbrella.
On the left are adorned with weapons such as spears with ornamented fringes and swords, as well as royal umbrellas, a decoration of long cloth called ular-ular or snake, and royal pennants called tonggol.
Photo by : Negeri Sembilan State Museum