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  • MOUNTAINS IN GREATER BANDUNG: Mount Sangianganjung (Sanghyang Anjung) Nagreg, the Remnants of the Kendan Kingdom Which is Rich in Obsidian Stones.

MOUNTAINS IN GREATER BANDUNG: Mount Sangianganjung (Sanghyang Anjung) Nagreg, the Remnants of the Kendan Kingdom Which is Rich in Obsidian Stones.

Mount Sangianganjung or Sanghyang Anjung offers two attractions through a leisurely ascent: the wealth of obsidian stones and the remnants of the Kendan Kingdom.

The charming atmosphere at Kendan Hill, a towering cliff with ferns and calliandra growing lushly in the center, May 2022. (Photo: Gan Gan Jatnika)

Penulis Gan Gan Jatnika11 November 2023

BandungBergerak.id - The history of the Kendan Kingdom, which was established in the 5th to 6th CE, is not widely known. Initially, this kingdom was a part of the Tarumanegara Kingdom but later gained independence and became the forerunner to the Galuh Kingdom.

Not all historians are certain about the existence of the Kendan Kingdom because its primary sources were considered weak. Primary sources refer to evidence such as objects, buildings, or documents that originate from the same time as what is being studied.

The existence of the Kendan Kingdom is derived from secondary sources, including the Wangsakerta manuscript and the Carita Parahyangan manuscript. There are even older manuscripts, such as the Pararatwan Parahyangan manuscript, but unfortunately, these texts have not been widely uncovered.

Historians who agree with the existence of the Kendan Kingdom analyze that the center of the Kendan Kingdom was located in the hilly region of Nagreg, precisely in the villages of Citaman and Nagreg. Meanwhile, its territory extended from the eastern half of the Citarum region to the Ciamis area. However, the territory of the Kendan Kingdom remained a part of the Tarumanegara Kingdom.

The Kendan Kingdom was a gift from the Tarumanegara King to his son-in-law. One of the purposes of establishing the Kendan Kingdom was to accelerate the development and empowerment of the eastern region of the Tarumanegara Kingdom. This strategy proved successful. The emergence of the Kendan Kingdom led to the development of the eastern region of the Tarumanegara Kingdom, especially in agriculture, religiosity, and the enhancement of its human resources.

The first King of Kendan was King Rajaresi Manikmaya. His wife, Dewi Tirtakancana, was the daughter of Maharaja Tarumanagara Suryawarman. In line with his character as a sage, Manikmaya was not the type of king who lived in luxury. Even his royal palace was relatively simple, constructed from wood and other basic materials. This is why artifacts from the Kendan Kingdom are hard to find.

The Kendan Village community believes that the tomb or memorial of King Rajaresi Manikmaya and his wife is located at the peak of Mount Sangianganjung, also known as Mount Sanghyang Anjung.

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Location and Access

Mount Sangianganjung or Mount Sanghyang Anjung is located to the east of the city center of Bandung. It is approximately 35 kilometers away. Administratively, this mountain is situated in Kendan Village, Nagreg District, Bandung Regency.

The peak of Mount Sangianganjung stands at an elevation of 1,061 meters above sea level (masl), based on the RBI (Rupa Bumi Indonesia) map sheet 1208-644, titled "Leles," 1st edition - 1999, at a scale of 1:25,000.

Access to Mount Sangianganjung from Bandung City is not difficult. You can drive eastward towards Cileunyi, then turn right towards Cipacing. Continue along the road towards Nagreg. After passing a railroad crossing, turn left towards Kendan Village. From there, you can ask local residents for directions to Mount Sangianganjung and parking areas.

Additionally, we can find online directions to Mount Sangianganjung by searching for "Bukit Kendan" using a search engine. Maps and route instructions will be available.

Mount Sangianganjung or Sanghyang Anjung (left) and Mount Batu Nagreg (right) as seen from the northwest direction, May 2022. Also, visible in the background are Mount Cipakumanggung, Mount Sagopok, and Mount Sadakeling. (Photo: Gan Gan Jatnika)
Mount Sangianganjung or Sanghyang Anjung (left) and Mount Batu Nagreg (right) as seen from the northwest direction, May 2022. Also, visible in the background are Mount Cipakumanggung, Mount Sagopok, and Mount Sadakeling. (Photo: Gan Gan Jatnika)

Kendan Hill and Sangianganjung Peak

The Kendan Kingdom site has two interesting places to visit, namely the Rajaresi Manikmaya Tomb Site at the peak and Kendan Hill at the foot of the mountain to the west.

Kendan Hill is a former stone mining complex that is no longer mined. It looks very interesting. The rock cliffs are lined up in various shapes and formations. Some even form gupitan formations or narrow gaps with high cliffs on their right and left sides. In the center of the Kendan Hill area, which was previously an open area, is now covered with lush bushes. Ferns and calliandras grow wild in large and dense populations.

It seems that people rarely come to Kendan Hill. The path is covered and overgrown with moss, making it slippery and rather difficult to pass. Even though, Kendan Hill is very interesting as a place to enjoy the natural atmosphere. In some areas where the surface of the land is quite large, we can sit back and relax while boiling water to make coffee or cook food.

Kendan Hill is not directly related to the Kendan Kingdom, but its existence as a Kendan stone mining site makes it one of the places often associated with the story of the Kendan Kingdom.

To visit Kendan Hill, you can make a benchmark at the Kendan Soccer Mini Field near the Nagreg Village Office. From there, we continue our journey for about 1 kilometer. Then, we will meet a small shop, called Warung Ibu Erung. Vehicles can be left here. We just need to cross the road and walk as far as 400 meters to Kendan Hills.

After enjoying the atmosphere of Kendan Hill, we can continue our journey to the peak of Mount Sangianganjung. The distance is about two kilometers. The trip should be done using a motorcycle or four-wheeled vehicle with the ability to climb and easy handling on rocky roads or slippery ground. If you are hesitant to cross the rocky and uphill terrain, you should park your vehicle at the T-junction. The journey to Sangianganjung Peak is done on foot. The distance is about one kilometer.

If the weather is good and the road conditions are not slippery, two-wheeled vehicles can take us to the area with a signpost that reads Kendan Kingdom Site. From this place, we walk on an uphill path of 200 meters. There is already a simple staircase or steps, with 160 steps, made to facilitate the journey.

Arriving at the top, we will see two shrines in the form of tombs. The shape is simple, it does not look like the tomb of a king.

In addition to the tombs or shrines, at Sangianganjung Peak we can also enjoy a beautiful view of the surrounding mountains. To the northwest, Mount Serewen and Mount Buyung can be seen. To the north, Mount Kerenceng can be seen. Meanwhile, to the south, Mount Kaledong and Mount Mandalawangi can be seen.

The climb to Mount Sangianganjung is a leisurely journey. It is not a hike through lush forests or steep climbs.

Black obsidian stones or Kendan stones can still be found in the area of Mount Sangianganjung Nagreg to this day. (Photo: Gan Gan Jatnika)
Black obsidian stones or Kendan stones can still be found in the area of Mount Sangianganjung Nagreg to this day. (Photo: Gan Gan Jatnika)

Toponymy and Geomorphology

The name Kendan Kingdom is derived from a natural source of shiny black stone resembling glass. This black stone is known as Kenan stone or Kendan stone. Some explanations suggest that the origin of this stone's name was "batu kaindraan," which gradually evolved in pronunciation to "kaindran" or "kendran," and eventually became "kendan."

Geologically, the shiny black glass-like stone is called obsidian. A Roman explorer named Obsidius is considered the first person to introduce this type of stone, and his name was immortalized to refer to this type of stone.

Obsidian is a stone formed from the lava that erupts from volcanoes. This lava then cools extremely rapidly, creating a glass-like, shiny stone consisting of a single color. The most commonly found color of obsidian worldwide is black, although other colors such as dark red, gray, or blue are less common.

Obsidian is strong and not easily brittle due to its relatively high silicon dioxide content. It's not surprising that in prehistoric times, obsidian was widely used for crafting tools. Prehistoric human traces in the Bandung plateau, found in the Pawon Padalarang Cave, for instance, are known to have used obsidian for crafting items like arrowheads, hooks, awls, or knives.

Because the source of obsidian in the Greater Bandung area is found in the Kendan region, archaeologists speculate that prehistoric humans traveled quite a distance from the Pawon Cave to Kendan Hill to obtain obsidian.

Geologist Budi Brahmantyo, in his book "Geologi Cekungan Bandung" (2011), mentions that in Mount Sangianganjung and Kendan, there are layers of folded and inclined tuff. These layers contain obsidian pebbles to cobbles.

According to the same book, the largest accumulation of obsidian is found on the northern slope of Mount Sangianganjung, in Kendan Village. Here, a large obsidian block measuring 1.5 meters in height is exposed at the surface. Furthermore, it is mentioned that geomorphologically, Mount Kendan is an isolated hill. Its morphological expression is that of a mesa, a flat-topped hill typically controlled by horizontal layers. Tuff layers with obsidian are observed at the top of this hill.

Other Sites of the Kendan Kingdom

In addition to Mount Sangianganjung, there are several other sites in this region associated with the history of the Kendan Kingdom. These include the Pamujaan Site near SDN (or elementary school) Pamujaan 01 and the Batu Korsi or Batu Karesi site on the slopes of Mount Serewen.

There are also the graves or memorials of Eyang Cakra and Eyang Singalarang. According to the local community, both of them are important figures related to the Kendan Kingdom. These sites are located in Citaman Village, a village adjacent to Kendan Village.

* Translate from this article Zelika Salsabila Insyra.

Editor: Ahmad Fikri