Brunei Rice Measure (Gantang), A Close Pair of Large Brass Rice Measures, South East Asia- The Sultanate of Brunei, Dated 1237AH

Identification Number: 551


Each of a cylindrical form, with plain edged handle, one rounded shaped inscribed cartouche is soldered on one side near to the Gantang’s handle, the inscribed cartouche is decorated with Jawi Script (Malay Script with Arabic alphabet), containing the following translated script;

The Gantang (the measuring vessel) is made during the reign of the Just Brunei King in the year 1312 AH. Equivalent to 1904 AD.

The reigning and ruling Brunei King or Sultan during the above date was the King Hashim Jalilul Alam Aqamaddin Ibin Sultan Omar Saifuddien.

Please notice the similarities with our current lot including the relatively close distance of the soldered brass cartouche that contains the inscription with the vessel’s handle, lot is illustrated on page 205.

For more details and comparison please see our sold following lot identification No. 370.


16. 8 cm is the height.

23 cm is the width including the Gantang’s handle.

18.5 cm diam. of the top & base.


Very good, some ware and tear, possibly, at one stage of the second Gantang’s life the inscribed cartouche had fallen and who ever previously had owned the item was not familiar with the language nor with the inscription and have had decided to put it back but unknowingly the cartouche was re-soldered to the Gantang’s body upside down.

Also, the second Gantang has two unusual and interesting alterations of which might need further research and analysis:

The first alteration is the Gantang’s upper opining top, it had been evenly and carefully cut at four equal sides in the form of a square possibly to add a fixed lid.

The second alteration found on the Gantang’s body, there is an engraved Arabic number which possibly the later ownership of the Gantang.

The later engraved date is 1351 AH., equivalent to 1932 AD. Also the last Arabic digit of number one (1) has been later untidily engraved and altered to the letter B in the English alphabet, the later alteration from number 1 to the letter B was potentially happened in the western world.


One Item was bought at a United Kingdom Auction House, the other Item was bought at United Kingdom Art Market.


For a similar example of Brass Rice Measure inscribed with Jawi script please see, the Message & The Monsoon, Islamic Art of South east Asia, from the collection of the Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia, 2005, ISBN: 983-40845-7-9.