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Traditional House of South Sumatra – Characteristics – Facts

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South Sumatra is an established province in Sumatra. In fact it had become the center of the Nusantara trade in the past. This area has been a place of sailors and merchants from around the world to stop in Palembang since the reign of Sriwijaya Kingdom that has a lot to influence civilization in this province. However, the local wisdom of the original tribe, the Palembang tribe in fact able to refrain from the outside culture that comes. One of the local wisdom, for example we can find on the traditional house of Palembang South Sumatra, named Rumah Limas. Here we are going to expand the detail about this traditional house.


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Structure Building of the House

If you observe carefully the image of the house behind the Rp. 10.000 Indonesia, the picture turned out to be Limas House which is a traditional house of Sumatra. In the picture you can see some of the uniqueness of the house with this stage structure.

The name of “Limas” in the design of this house is known to come from the shape of its roof like a cut off pyramid (Limasan). Because of the structure of the stage, it is certainly clear that this house stands on large pillars. The height of the pole itself varies from 0.5 to 3 meters depending on the place. If the house stands in an area that is often flooded high, then the pole of this house will be higher. However, the pole house of limas that amounted at least 32 pieces (or multiples) generally made of wood Ulen is famous for weathering resistance.

To climb Limas house, there are 2 stairs that are located on the left and right of the house. The staircase leads us to a terrace surrounded by a wooden fence called “tenggalung”. The wooden fence is usually equipped with carvings of flora that can increase the aesthetic value of this traditional house of South Sumatra from the front view.

The structure of the house on the stage of limas house also makes the bottom or bottom of the house. It is usually used as a place to carry out the activities of women every day. Then on the floor of this house, you will find the level of terraces (gravestones) which has its own philosophical value.

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The Function of Rumah Limas

Besides being a cultural icon, in the past custom, House of Limas from South Sumatra also served as a residence of the people of Palembang tribe. To support the function, Limas house is divided into several sections in accordance with its designation.

  1. On the front there are jogan, workspace, gegajah, and amben. All of the room became the main room when the house owner held the event such as slack, traditional ceremony, reception, and important meetings. Therefore, in parts of this room we will find many ornaments, such as rich cabinets that contain displays as a separator between the front and center.
  2. In the middle of the head of the family room, Pangkeng Kaputren (girls room), Pangkeng Keputran (boy room), Family Room, and Child Support Room, Pangkeng Penganten (bridal room). The room in the middle is private. Not everyone is allowed in except the members of the homeowner’s family.
  3. At the back there is a Kitchen or Pawon, Ornamental Room, Overflow Room, and Toilet. Young women and women are usually more active in this section.

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The Philosophy from House of Limas

This traditional house of South Sumatra has a fence in its porch. The high fence and surrounding all parts of the porch contain the philosophical value that a girl or girl Palembang must be kept from the outside environment. It also symbolizes that they must have a shield to keep their dignity and pride in the environment.

The floor of this house has terraces level (kekijing). There are at least 3 levels in the front of the house that is used to hold a custom event. The higher the floor level, the guest sitting on the floor is positioned in the customs and governance is also higher.

The pyramid house is built facing east and west. This rule applies because the Palembang tribe embraces the philosophy of “Matoari eedoop and matoari mati” which means sunrise and sunset. This philosophy has a philosophical value that Palembang people should proportionately remember that life in the world is only temporary.

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Unique Facts of Limas Traditional House

Besides becoming famous by its structure, House of Limas also has some unique facts that not many people know them. Here we are going to expand the unique facts of Limas House.

  1. Built without using nails

This house was built without using nails, but wear pegs. It can be dismantled pairs. Originally this house was founded by the Palembang nobility named Prince Sharif Abdurrahman Al Habsi in 1836. But eventually this house used as a museum and named the House Museum Bari. Before here the location is behind the Office of the Mayor of Palembang.

  1. The whole part of the building is made of wood

Limas House Building is overall made of wood. For the foundation is used ulin wood which if the more submerged the water will be stronger. While for other parts of the house made of meranti wood, trembesi, and mahogany.

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  1. Had been visited by Queen Beatrix and Prince Willem

The uniqueness of Limas House was also stole the attention of foreign tourists. In fact, some honor guests from other countries had ever come to this house like Queen Beatrix and her son Prince Willem in around 1993. It proved that our culture is interesting and well known in the world.

  1. There is a 300 year-old Limas House

Limas House in Balaputera Dewa Museum is the most historic in Palembang. This house has reached 300 years old and still well maintained until now. You may find other Limas Houses other than at Balaputera Dewa Museum while traveling to South Sumatra. However, Limas House that is authentic is only in the museum. However, some of the contents of his house have been moved to TMII.

Those are about the traditional house of South Sumatra called House of Limas. If you are curious with the original form, then you can visit to Palembang precisely in the Museum Balaputera Dewa. Hopefully, this kind of traditional will be well maintained and preserved so that our kids and grandchildren could see them.

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