Mandar people
ᨔᨘᨀᨘ ᨆᨊᨛᨉᨑᨛ
سوكو ماندار
Traditional Mandar Wedding at Mandar, West Sulawesi, 2011.
Total population
Approximately 1 million
Regions with significant populations
West Sulawesi565,225
South Sulawesi489,986
South Kalimantan49,322
East Kalimantan33,000
Mandar, Mamasa, Mamuju, Indonesian
Islam (predominantly)[1]
Related ethnic groups

The Mandarese are an ethnic group in the Indonesian province of West Sulawesi in Sulawesi. The Mandar language belongs to the Northern subgroup of the South Sulawesi languages group of the Malayo-Polynesian branch of the Austronesian language family. The closest language to Mandar is the Toraja-Sa'dan language.[2]


Before there was a regional expansion, the Mandarese along with the Bugis people, Makassar people and Toraja people formed a cultural diversity in South Sulawesi. Although politically West Sulawesi and South Sulawesi are divided by a border, the Mandarese are historically and culturally close knitted to their cognate relatives in South Sulawesi. The term "Mandar" is actually a unified name among the seven coastal kingdoms (Pitu Ba'ba'na Binanga)[3] and seven river kingdoms (Pitu Ulunna Salu).[4] In terms of ethnicity, the Pitu Ulunna Salu or commonly known as Kondo Sapata are classified as a part of the Toraja group (Mamasa Regency and part of Mamuju Regency), while at Pitu Ba'ba'na Binanga itself there are a variety of dialects and languages.[5] The strength of these fourteen kingdoms complement each other and the term Sipamandar (meaning, brotherhood and unification of the Mandarese community)[6] as one people through a covenant that was sworn by their ancestors at Allewuang Batu in Luyo.


The Mandarese are made up of seventeen kingdoms. Seven upstream kingdoms which are called Pitu Ulunna Salu, seven estuary kingdoms that are known as Pitu Ba'bana Binanga and three kingdoms that are called Kakarunna Tiparittiqna Uhai.[7]

The seven kingdoms that merged in the Pitu Ulunna Salu Alliance region are:[4]

The seven kingdoms that merged in the Pitu Baqbana Binanga Alliance region are:[3]

The three kingdoms that called Kakaruanna Tiparittiqna Uhai in the Lembang Mapi region are:[8][9]

The upstream kingdoms are well versed with the conditions of the mountains while the estuary kingdoms are experienced with the conditions of the ocean. With the boundaries on the south which borders Pinrang Regency, South Sulawesi, on the eastern side borders with Tana Toraja Regency, South Sulawesi, on the north part borders with Palu, Central Sulawesi, and on the west coast border is Straits of Makassar.

Throughout the history of Mandar kingdoms, many notable freedom fighters arose against the Dutch East Indies such as Imaga Daeng Rioso, Puatta I Sa'adawang, Maradia Banggae,[10] Ammana Iwewang,[11] Andi Depu,[12] Mara'dia Batulaya and so forth, although later regions occupied by the Mandarese was successfully captured by the Dutch East Indies. From the zeal of the Mandarese which is referred as "the spirit of Assimandarang" until later in 2004 the Mandar region became recognized as a province in Indonesia as West Sulawesi.

Social structure

The Mandarese people are dominated by the vestiges of traditional relations. Feudal nobility, including royal rulers of the past mara'dia (prince), participates with the administrative and governmental system.[13]

However, the following interesting trend was observed in Mandarese society is that many women left their traditional work at the loom and began to engage in the fish trade instead.[14]


In Mandarese culture, they are quite similar to the Bugis people. They engage in fisheries by exporting dried, salted or fermented fish[15] and also in agriculture by cultivating coconut palm, dried rice, coffee, tobacco, as well as forestry. It is believed that the Mandarese people are some of the best sailors in Sulawesi,[16] who serve in the sea transportation sector.

A traditional musical instrument is a two-stringed lute.[17] The traditional house of the Mandarese is called boyang.[18] Customary festivals such as Sayyang Pattu'du (Dancing horse),[19] and Passandeq (Sailing on an outrigger canoe)[20] are practiced by the Mandarese. In South Pulau Laut District, Kota Baru Regency, the Mandarese practice the Mappando'esasi (Sea bathing) ceremony.[21] Traditional food such as Jepa,[22] Pandeangang Peapi, Banggulung Tapa and so on are Mandarese specialty.

The Mandarese are predominantly Muslim. The Mandarese adopted Islam in the early 17th century.[23]


  1. ^ Martin van Bruinessen (2013). Contemporary Developments in Indonesian Islam: Explaining the "conservative Turn". p. 147. ISBN 9789814414562. Retrieved 17 March 2018.
  2. ^ Toby Alice Volkman (1990). Sulawesi: Island Crossroads of Indonesia. Passport Books. ISBN 978-0-8442-9906-8.
  3. ^ a b Charles F. Keyes (2006). On The Margins of Asia:Diversity In Asian States. Association for Asian Studies. p. 242. ISBN 978-0-924304-48-4.
  4. ^ a b Drs. Abd. Muis Mandra. "Pitu Ulunna Salu, Adaq Tuo (Hukum Hidup)". Kampung Mandar. Retrieved 2017-05-12.
  5. ^ L. T. Tangdilintin (1985). Tongkonan (rumah adat Toraja): arsitektur & ragam hias Toraja. Yayasan Lepongan Bulan Tana Toraja. p. 15. OCLC 572001383.
  6. ^ Sejarah dan dialog peradaban: persembahan 70 tahun Prof. Dr. Taufik Abdullah. Lembaga Ilmu Pengetahuan Indonesia. 2005. p. 728. ISBN 978-97-936-7384-4.
  7. ^ Muhammad Ridwan Alimuddin (2005). Orang Mandar Orang Laut: Kebudayaan Bahari Mandar Mengarungi Gelombang Perubahan Zaman. Kepustakaan Populer Gramedia. ISBN 978-979-9100-27-6.
  8. ^ Drs. Abd. Muis Mandra. "Paliliq Massedang, wilayah Tiparittiqna Uhai Mandar". Kampung Mandar. Retrieved 2017-05-12.
  9. ^ "Kerajaan Alu". Arekindo. Retrieved 2017-05-12.
  10. ^ Sulbar, dulu, kini, dan esok: sebuah jalan terjal menuju provinsi. Yapensi. 2006. p. 27. ISBN 97-932-7432-8.
  11. ^ Bustan Basir Maras (2007). Ziarah tanah Mandar. Annora Media. p. 71. OCLC 212205023.
  12. ^ Aminah P. Hamzah (1991). Hajjah Andi Depu Maraddia Balanipa: biografi pahlawan. Departemen Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan. pp. 2–3. OCLC 29430243.
  13. ^ Field Museum of Natural History Bulletin. The Museum. 1988. p. 68. OCLC 23943078.
  14. ^ Volkman, Toby Alice (1994). "Our garden is the sea: Contingency and improvisation in Mandar women's work". American Ethnologist. 21 (3): 564–585. doi:10.1525/ae.1994.21.3.02a00060.
  15. ^ Melani Budianta; Manneke Budiman; Abidin Kusno; Mikihiro Moriyama, eds. (2017). Cultural Dynamics in a Globalized World: Proceedings of the Asia-Pacific Research in Social Sciences and Humanities, Depok, Indonesia, November 7-9, 2016: Topics in Arts and Humanities. CRC Press. ISBN 978-13-518-4660-8.
  16. ^ Insight Guides (2016). Insight Guides Indonesia. Apa Publications (UK) Limited. ISBN 978-17-867-1031-4.
  17. ^ Gini Gorlinski (1999). Dieter Christensen (ed.). "South Sulawesi Strings by Philip Yampolsky". Yearbook for Traditional Music. International Council for Traditional Music's Yearbook for Traditional Music. Vol. 31: 200. ISSN 0740-1558.
  18. ^ Koninklijk Instituut voor Taal (2005). Bijdragen tot de Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde, Volume 161. M. Nijhoff.
  19. ^ "Sayang Pattudu Tarian Kuda Khas Sulawesi Barat". Pesona Mandar. 27 August 2017. Retrieved 2018-09-09.
  20. ^ Hariandi Hafid (30 July 2017). "Horst H. Liebner, berguru tradisi maritim hingga ke Sulawesi". Beritagar. Retrieved 2018-09-09.
  21. ^ Fadjeriansyah (13 March 2014). Rian (ed.). "Pesta Mapandaoesasi Kurang Perhatian". Gema Saijaan. Retrieved 2018-09-09.
  22. ^ Fauzan (29 January 2017). "Nikmatnya Buka Pagi dengan Roti Singkong dan Ikan Tuing-Tuing". Liputan6. Retrieved 2018-09-09.
  23. ^ Bruinessen, Martin van (2013). Contemporary Developments in Indonesian Islam: Explaining the "conservative Turn". Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. p. 147. ISBN 978-981-4414-56-2.