Archaeology of Indonesia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Prajnaparamita of Java has become perhaps the best known icon of ancient Indonesian art, as one of the rare images that successfully combines aesthetic perfection and spirituality.[1]

The archaeology of Indonesia is the study of the archaeology of the archipelagic realm that today formed the nation of Indonesia, stretching from prehistory through almost two millennia of documented history. The ancient Indonesian archipelago was a geographical maritime bridge between the political and cultural centers of Ancient India and Imperial China, and it is notable as a part of ancient Maritime Silk Road.[2]

The first government institution of archaeology, officially was formed in 1913 with the establishment of Oudheidkundige Dienst in Nederlandsch-Indië (Archaeological Service in the Dutch East Indies), under Professor Dr. N.J. Kromm.[3](p5)

Today, the national institution of archaeology in Indonesia is Pusat Arkeologi Nasional (National Archaeological Center).[4]


Part of a series on the
History of Indonesia
Surya Majapahit Gold.svg VOC gold.svg National emblem of Indonesia Garuda Pancasila.svg
Flag of Indonesia.svg Indonesia portal

Dutch East Indies period

The archaeological study in Indonesia has its roots in 18th-century Batavia, when a group of Dutch intellectuals on 24 April 1778, established a scientific institution under the name Bataviaasch Genootschap van Kunsten en Wetenschappen, (Royal Batavian Society of Arts and Sciences).[5] This private body had the aim of promoting research in the field of arts and sciences, especially in history, archaeology, ethnography and physics, and publish the various findings.

In 1901, the colonial government of Dutch East Indies set up the Commissie in Nederlandsch Indie voor Oudheidkundige Onderzoek van Java en Madoera, headed by Dr J. L. A. Brandes.[4] It was later officially recognized in 14 June 1913, with the formation of Oudheidkundige Dienst in Nederlandsch-Indië (Archaeological Service in the Dutch East Indies) — often abbreviated as "OD", under Professor Dr. N.J. Kromm.[3](p5) Kromm is credited as the pioneer that established the organizational foundation of archaeological study in the East indies, which strive to ensure that every archaeological findings, discoveries, explorations and studies were conducted and recorded correctly according to the scientific approach of modern archaeology. During Kromm's administration, numbers of journals, books and catalogues were composed and published which systematically records the archaeological findings in the colony. Several initial restoration works on temple ruins of Java also conducted during this period.[3](p5)

Republic of Indonesia period

After the turbulent period of World War II Pacific War and the ensuing Indonesian Revolution (1945—1949), the Oudheidkundige Dienst ("OD") were nationalized by the newly recognized United States of Indonesia in 1950 as Djawatan Poerbakala Repoeblik Indonesia Serikat (Archaeological Service of the United States of Indonesia). In 1951, the organization of Djawatan Purbakala was improved as Dinas Purbakala as a part of Djawatan Kebudajaan Departemen Pendidikan dan Kebudajaan (Cultural Service of Department of Education and Culture), with independent archaeological offices in Makassar, Prambanan and Bali.[3](p5)

In 1953, two of the first native Indonesian archaeologist were graduated, one of them was R. Soekmono, whom subsequently succeed Bernet Kemper as the chief of Djawatan Poerbakala Repoeblik Indonesia. Later the national archaeological institution is changed to Lembaga Poerbakala dan Peninggalan Nasional (Institute of Archaeology and National Heritage) or LPPN.[6]

In 1975, LPPN was separated into two institutions; Direktorat Pemeliharaan dan Pelestarian Peninggalan Sejarah dan Purbakala which focussed on preservation efforts; and Pusat Penelitian Purbakala dan Peninggalan Nasional which focussed on archaeological research.[4]

In 1980, the institution was changed to Pusat Penelitian Arkeologi Nasional (National Archaeological Research Center) under Ministry of Education and Culture. In 2000 the institution were transferred to Ministry of Culture and Tourism. In 2005 the institution name were changed to Pusat Penelitian dan Pengembangan Arkeologi Nasional (National Archaeological Research and Development Center). In 2012 changed again to Pusat Arkeologi Nasional (National Archaeological Center) with authority transferred back from Ministry of Tourism to Ministry of Education and Culture.[4]

Today, several Indonesian public universities has archaeology study programme, among others are Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, University of Indonesia in Jakarta,[7] Udayana University in Bali, Hasanuddin University in Makassar, Haluoleo University in Kendari and Jambi University in Jambi.[8]

Notable sites

Borobudur restoration circa 1980

Notable findings and artifacts

The 9th century Central Javanese Wonoboyo Hoard


See also


  1. ^ "Worshipping the Source: The Buddhist Goddess Prajnaparamita". egregores. 
  2. ^ "Maritime Silk Road". SEAArch. 
  3. ^ a b c d Soejono (R. P.) (2006). Archaeology: Indonesian Perspective : R.P. Soejono's Festschrift. Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia, International Center for Prehistoric and Austronesian Studies (Indonesia), Penerbit Yayasan Obor Indonesia (in Indonesian). ISBN 9789792624991. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Sejarah Pusat Arkeologi Nasional". Pusat Penelitian Arkeologi Nasional (in Indonesian). 
  5. ^ Rosi, Adele (1998). Museum Nasional Guide Book. Jakarta: PT Indo Multi Media, Museum Nasional and Indonesian Heritage Society. p. 4. 
  6. ^ Ferry Ardiyanto (16 June 2014). "Sejarah Lembaga Purbakala". Kementerian Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan (in Indonesian). 
  7. ^ "Archaeology". Universitas Indonesia. 
  8. ^ "Arkeologi Universitas Jambi". 
  9. ^ "Muaro Jambi Temple: The Legacy of Ancient Jambi". 25 September 2011. 
  10. ^ Syofiardi Bachyul Jb (November 25, 2014). "Muarajambi Temple: Jambi's monumental mystery". 
  11. ^ "Warisan Saragi Diah Bunga". Majalah Tempo. 3 November 1990. 
  12. ^ "The Cirebon shipwreck". UNESCO. 

Further reading

  • Soejono (R. P.) (2006). Archaeology: Indonesian Perspective : R.P. Soejono's Festschrift. Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia, International Center for Prehistoric and Austronesian Studies (Indonesia), Penerbit Yayasan Obor Indonesia (in Indonesian). ISBN 9789792624991. 

External links

  • Official site of Pusat Arkeologi Nasional (Arkenas) or National Archaeological Center (in Indonesian)
  • World Archaeology, Category: Indonesia
Retrieved from ""
This content was retrieved from Wikipedia :
This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article "Archaeology of Indonesia"; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA