Trading Meaning In Bahasa Melayu

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What is the Different Between Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Melayu

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Have you ever confused with these terms: ‘Bahasa Indonesia’ and ‘Melayu’. Both share similarities, but also consist significant differences. Although Bahasa Indonesia was derived from Melayu (as well as Melayu used by Malaysian), most Indonesian would not call their language as Melayu because the name ‘Indonesia’ is part of national identity (also Melayu is stereotypically linked to Malaysia, which has up and down relation with Indonesia).

On the other words, differentiation of Bahasa Indonesia and Malay caused by politics! But, there are also linguistics differences between both languages. Therefore, let’s learn What is the Different Between Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Melayu!

Before we step on, check these following articles:

Relation with History

Bahasa Melayu is an ancient language that has been used long time ago, while Bahasa Indonesia is one of its variation. It was used in the old manuscripts mostly in Melayu Empire as well as communication language for ordinary people. Before Indonesian Youth Pledge in 1928, there were two big classification of Bahasa Melayu: Bahasa Melayu Tinggi (High-Malay) or Melayu Riau and Bahasa Melayu Rendah (Low-Malay).

After Youth Pledge, Bahasa Indonesia is considered as uniting language and became parts of national identity. Meanwhile, the terms ‘Bahasa Melayu’ is considered as Sumatra local language (related to Malay Heritage and ethnicity), beside commonly linked to Malaysian.

In its development, Bahasa Indonesia is very dynamics because it has many loanwords, especially Indonesian Words Derived from Dutch and local language (which differentiate it with Malaysian language). In addition, because of Hindunese and Buddhist, as well as Muslim Empire occupation Indonesia, the loanwords consist Sanskrit Words and Indonesian Words Derived from Arabic

Indonesian vs Malay Vocabulary

The biggest significant difference of both languages are vocabulary. There are three types of differences, which are (1) different spelling but same meanings, (2) same word different meaning as well as (3) completely different vocabulary. Here are the examples.

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(1) Different spelling, same meaning

English Bahasa Indonesia Malay
Different Beda Beza
Apple Apel Epal

That’s a simple example about what is the different between Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Melayu!

(2) same word different meaning

Words in Bahasa Indonesia means
in Malay means
Percuma Useless Free Free is Gratis (derived from the word ‘gratia’ means ‘gift’
Cocok Perfect match, fit Having sex (In Bahasa Indonesia, ‘having sex’ is bercinta)

That’s a simple example about what is the different between Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Melayu!

(3) completely different vocabulary

Words Bahasa Indonesia Malay
Teacher Guru Cikgu
Head Office Kantor pusat Ibu Pejabat

Those are differences between Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Melayu in Malaysia. On the other hand, there are also common difference between Bahasa Indonesia and Bahasa Melayu in Sumatra in terms of vocabulary. These are some words that could cause cultural misunderstanding between two languages.

Words in Bahasa Indonesia means
in Bahasa Melayu in Sumatra means
Kereta Train Free
Siap Ready Finish

Other words including different usage of terms ‘enak’, which means ‘delicious’ in Bahasa Indonesia and ‘good/beautiful’ in Bahasa Melayu.

Indonesian vs Malay Language Variation

Dutch Colonialism did not only deliver legacy in terms of Indonesian Alphabets pronunciation (which different with Melayu Malay), but also give a very big influence with definition of Indonesian Formal Language. However, there is also Low-Malay that influenced the way Indonesian people use their language. Have you ever find Indonesian that hardly use formal and standard language?

That because in Indonesia, the language were mostly used for trading things and also it assimilated with the diversity of Indonesian people, especially with their mother-tongue. Therefore, it emerged different type of variations. You may found different dialects between Indonesian people from Papua with Chinese descent, or Javanese people with Sumatra people. Here are some examples.

  • Kalian berdualah yang ke sana (You two go there) – Bahasa Indonesia
    Kam dua sudah mo yang ke sana – Bahasa Indonesia with Papua dialects
  • Kami melihat perempuan itu (We saw the woman) – Bahasa Indonesia
    Kita orang liat itu perempuan – Bahasa Indonesia with Melayu-Tionghoa dialects
  • Bagaimana kita akan pergi? (How will we go?) – Bahasa Indonesia
    Cam mana kita hendak pigi – Bahasa Indonesia with Melayu Sumatra dialects

Notes: Have you ever found other dialects? You could try to listen and identify the differences in terms of vocabulary as well as structures! On the other hand, Bahasa Melayu that used in other country (in Malaysia or Brunei) might not have those variants. In Malaysia, it is mostly mixed with English (because British colonialism) with probably Chinese and Indian language.

Now you have known the significant differences between the two languages. I hope you won’t be confuse! Then, please check these following useful articles that might help you with better understanding of Bahasa Indonesia!

Meaning of Bahasa Malaysia in English

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Bahasa Melayu

Bahasa Me·la·yu

Noun 1. Bahasa Melayu – the Malay language spoken in Malaysia

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