Set of Romanised Baba Malay books

Publications such as this ‘Chrita Dulu-kala’, loosely translated as ‘stories from ancient times’, were written for popular reading at the turn of the 20th century right upto the 1950s. Written in serialised format, Chrita Dulu-kala featured famous Chinese folklore, legends and historical epics such as ‘Romance of the Three Kingdoms’, ‘Water Margin and ‘Journey to the West’ written in Baba Malay - a unique Malay creole with substantial Hokkien (Chinese dialect) influence. These books are not published any more. While the general readership of Chrita Dulu-kala was generally thought to be male and educated, it is possible its contents reached a wider audience. Some older Peranakans today recall being told stories from these books by their elders.

Date/Period
c. 1930s
Region
Singapore
Accession No.
XXXX-02293
Collection of
Asian Civilisations Museum
Credit Line
Gift of Mr. Timothy Lim
Category
Rare Books