21st Sultan of Perak: Sultan Shahabuddin Riayat Shah ibni Raja Inu (1830-1851)

Raja Chulan bin Raja Inu[1] was the grandson of Sultan Ahmaddin Shah. Raja Chulan was granted the title of Raja Kechil Muda in 1786 before his promotion to Raja Bendahara. In 1826, he was appointed Raja Muda. Raja Chulan succeeded to the throne of Perak on 20 December 1830 and styled as Sultan Shahabuddin Riayat Shah upon the demise of his cousin, Sultan Abdullah Muadzam Shah.

Sultan Shahabuddin wrote to the British presence in Penang[2] on 26 June 1831, informing them that he was the newly-installed Sultan of Perak. A year later, he wrote another letter informing about the potential attack by Sultan Muhammad Shah of Selangor arising from Perak’s long overdue debt with her southernly neighbour (apparently from the time of Sultan Ibrahim Shah[3]). Following the Low Treaty signed in 1826, the presence of an English trader named George Stuart in Perak, together with troops from the Company, were able to thwart Selangor’s intention. Later in 1837, Selangor was reminded by the British Resident in Penang against any future attacks on Perak.

During this time, a descendant of Penghulu Mukim Lubok Merbau named Long Jaafar was appointed by Dato’ Panglima Bukit Gantang to collect taxes in Kerian and Kuala Kurau. In 1848, Long Jaafar paved the way to large-scale tin mining in Larut, which saw the influx of Chinese immigrants in Perak.

Sir Samuel George Bonham, Governor of the Straits Settlements (1836-43). (Source: Wikimedia)

In 1842, a misunderstanding occurred between Sultan Shahabuddin Riayat Shah and Sultan Ahmad Tajuddin Halim Shah of Kedah, pertaining Kedah’s claim to the Kerian District. However, the rift was concluded with the intervention by Sir Samuel George Bonham, the then Governor of the Straits Settlements[4].

Raja Bendahara Ngah Ali ibni Sultan Shahabuddin Shah[5], acting on behalf of his father, had given the Larut district to Long Jaafar on 6 November 1850. The letter pertaining the handover of Larut to Long Jaafar was also signed by the chiefs of Perak which included the Temenggung, the Panglima Bukit Gantang, the Panglima Kinta, the Shahbandar and the Seri Adika Raja.

Sultan Shahabuddin Riayat Shah mangkat in 1851 and was interred at Kampung Tanjung Penangguh, near Kampung Gajah. The posthumous title Marhum Safiullah was conferred subsequently. Almarhum was married to Tok Engku Raja Mandak binti Raja Mahmud and had a son, Raja Mahmud. She passed away in Sayong, Kuala Kangsar. Almarhum’s second consort, Raja Perempuan Nutidah Selamat, was the mother of the aforementioned Raja Ngah Ali who later became the 24th Sultan of Perak.


[1]Not to be mistaken with Raja Chulan Raja Abdul Hamid, the writer of Hikayat Misa Melayu.
[2]In 1805, Penang (also referred to Prince of Wales Island) was elevated to the status of a Residency of the British Empire, an official colonial subdivision similar to that in British India and the Persian Gulf. In 1826, Penang, along with Malacca and Singapore, became part of the Straits Settlements under the British administration in India, later coming under direct British rule in 1867 as a Crown Colony.
[3] Sultan Ibrahim Shah ibni Almarhum Sultan Salehuddin was the second Sultan of Selangor that reigned from 1778 till 1826. His son, Sultan Muhammad Shah (1826-1857), was the third Sultan of Selangor, during which time the state was divided into five individual territories ruled by its own local Raja.
[4] Since the formation of the Straits Settlements in 1826, the role of British Resident-Councillor was taken over by the Governor of Straits Settlement.
[5] Raja Bendahara Ngah Ali ibni Almarhum Sultan Shahabuddin Shah was later the 24th Sultan of Perak (1865-1871).


1. Portal Raja Kita Negeri Perak Darul Ridzuan
2. Laman Rasmi Pejabat DYMM Sultan Perak
3. Wikipedia: History of Penang.

5 thoughts on “21st Sultan of Perak: Sultan Shahabuddin Riayat Shah ibni Raja Inu (1830-1851)

  1. Pingback: DYTM Raja Muda: the heir apparent to the throne of Perak « SembangKuala BLOG

  2. Pingback: DYTM Raja Muda Perak: the heir apparent « SembangKuala BLOG

  3. Pingback: 24th Sultan of Perak: Sultan Ali Al-Mukammal Inayat Shah (1865-1871) « SembangKuala BLOG

  4. Pingback: Wilkinson’s treatise of the history of pre-British Perak « SembangKuala BLOG

  5. Pingback: Siri ‘A History of Perak’ I: Campurtangan British | SembangKuala

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