26th Sultan of Perak: Sultan Abdullah Muhammad Shah II ibni Almarhum Sultan Jaafar Safiuddin Muazzam Shah (1874-1876)


Portrait of Sultan Abdullah Muhammad Shah II. (Source: Arkib Negara Malaysia)

Sultan Abdullah Muhammad Shah was born Raja Abdullah on 21 September 1842 and was the eldest son of Sultan Jaafar Safiuddin Muazzam Shah. Raja Abdullah was made Raja Muda in 1865 upon the death of his father, when Sultan Ali Al-Mukammal Inayat Shah was appointed the 24th Sultan of Perak.

When Raja Bendahara Ismail was proclaimed Sultan in 1871 after the demise of Almarhum Sultan Ali, Raja Muda Abdullah wrote to Sir Harry Ord, the Governor of the Straits Settlements, proclaiming that he was really the rightful heir to the throne and the Sultan Ismail’s succession was not legal and not in accordance with the adat of the State. Sir Andrew Clarke later took over as the new Governor of the Straits Settlements, and came to Pulau Pangkor on 15 January 1874 and conferring with Raja Muda Abdullah and some of the Malay chiefs. This meeting in Pulau Pangkor was not attended by either Sultan Ismail or Raja Yusuf. The result of the meeting was the Treaty of Pangkor which was signed on 20 January 1874. Amongst the terms of the Pangkor Treaty were:

1. Raja Muda Abdullah to be made the Sultan of Perak in place of Sultan Ismail
2. The deposed Sultan Ismail is to be given the title Sultan Muda
3. The Sultan must provide the British Resident with a place of residence
4. The Resident’s advice must be asked for and acted upon all matters of Government other than touching Islam and the Malay custom (also known as the contentious fasal enam of the Treaty)

J.W.W. Birch was appointed by the British as the first Resident of Perak. It was from the later meetings of Birch and Frank Swettenham with Raja Yusuf at Senggang and Sultan Muda Ismail (as they were not present at the signing of the treaty) that both Raja Yusuf and Sultan Muda Ismail disagreed with the terms signed in the treaty made by Sultan Abdullah with the British. Not surprisingly, trouble broke out between Sultan Abdullah and his chiefs with Birch. Consequently, Birch was assassinated at Pasir Salak on 2 November 18751.

Britsh troops were sent to Perak, one contingent going upstream attacking Dato’ Maharaja Lela’s stronghold at Pasir Salak, while another contingent landed at Matang and marched on to Kuala Kangsar. Thus began the Perak War.

Meanwhile, Sultan Muda Ismail joined forces with Dato’ Maharaja Lela at Belanja. Taking with them the articles of the State Regalia, they first retreated to Kinta and then to Upper Perak with the British soldiers hot in pursuit. Finally, Sultan Muda Ismail surrendered to Sultan Ahmad Tajuddin of Kedah, who in turn handed over the surrendering forces to Major-General Anson, the Lieutenant-Governor of Penang. Sultan Muda Ismail was exiled to Skudai and the state Regalia were taken by British Government for safe keeping in England.


(Source: Arkib Negara Malaysia)

Following the arrest of Dato’ Maharaja Lela and his conspirators, Sultan Abdullah, together with members of his family, was sent into exile by the British to the Seychelles on 30 March 1877, together with the Orang Kaya Kaya Menteri Larut Ngah Ibrahim Long Jaafar, Orang Kaya Kaya Laksamana Mohd Amin Alang Duakap and Orang Kaya Kaya Shahbandar Uda Maamor. Two sons of Sultan Abdullah, Raja Mansur and Raja Chulan, were spared and remained to continue their early education at Raffles Institution in Singapore and later at Malacca High School.

Dato’ Maharaja Lela and Dato’ Sagor were tried in Matang (the judge of which appointed by the British being Raja Idris) and sentenced to death by hanging. They were duly hung in Taiping.

On arrival at the Seychelles2, Sultan Abdullah was provided a government-owned residence initially at Union Vale in Victoria, Mahé. Tuanku and the other exiled chiefs were also given allowances “suitable to their rank and station“. A strict watch was kept over them in Victoria and then they were shortly relocated to Félicité, where they remained for five years.

Sultan Abdullah's residence at Victoria, Mahe during his exile from 1877 to 1894. (Source: Personal collection of YM Raja Kamariah Raja Kamaralzaman, from the National Archives at Mahé, Seychelles)

A portrait of Sultan Abdullah and his eldest son, Raja Mansur, taken in London shortly before he was allowed to return from exile. (Source: Arkib Negara Malaysia)

When the turmoil in Perak had dwindled down, Sultan Abdullah was allowed to return to Victoria, Mahé in 1882. It was during this time, Tuanku was able to lead a quiet yet better lifestyle, being able to mix with people of high society in the island, and having access to Government House. Tuanku’s children (some of whom were born in the Seychelles) attended the local schools – the boys to the Government school, and later to England, whilst the girls attended St. Paul’s Mission School for Girls. It was during Tuanku’s years in Victoria, that he had support from many of the colonial merchants and persons of well-repute in the appeal for his return to the Federated Malay States. One such petition dated 16 May 1889 to Major-General Hawley, the Officer Commisioning the Government of Mauritius and its Dependencies, described “… Sultan Abdullah has won the respect and esteem of the inhabitants of Seychelles in general and the undersigned would be very happy indeed to learn that on this fitting occasion, Her Majesty (Queen Victoria) has been graciously pleased to deliver him from his captivity“. The petition’s many signatories included barristers-at-law, commissioners, merchants and planters.

One of the earlier petitions (dated 188?) to the British presence in Mauritius pleading clemency for Sultan Abdullah. (Source: YM Raja Kamariah Raja Kamaralzaman, from the National Archives at Mahé, Seychelles)

Sultan Abdullah was allowed to travel to England3 (it is believed from archive records that he went to England in the winter of 1890) and shortly on his return to the Seychelles, Tuanku was permitted to return to the Federated Malay States, for which he finally left for in 1894. It was reported that by this time Tuanku had some affectionate attachment with the colony in Seychelles – “… and, on his departure, expressed in a speech the regret which he felt on leaving a colony where he had passed so many happy years“. Tuanku had then lived in the Seychelles for 17 years.

Sultan Abdullah lived for a time in Singapore and then in Penang. In 1922, he was allowed to return to Kuala Kangsar where he died soon after on 22 December 1922. He was interred at Bukit Chandan and was conferred the posthumous title of Marhum Habibullah.

Editor’s notes: SembangKuala has posted several Sultan Abdullah related entries and would like to inform readers that you may read them by clicking on ‘abdullah’, ‘pangkor treaty’ or ‘jww birch’ in the tag cloud located in the middle column of the webpage. We are also planning to publish a few more Sultan Abdullah-related posts in the near future.

1. Bradley’s History of the Seychelles Vol II. p301-2. [Retrieved from YM Raja Kamariah Raja Kamaralzaman’s personal archival collection obtained from the National Archives at Mahé, Seychelles]
2. Laman Rasmi Pejabat DYMM Sultan Perak
3. YM Raja Kamariah Raja Kamaralzaman’s personal archival collection
4. The National Archives. [Visiting Card: Sultan Abdullah of Perak. Bradlaugh/1708(4). 15/12/1890]

  1. A detailed appraisal of the events surrounding the assassination of JWW Birch has been posted on Sembangkuala (in Bahasa Malaysia) here.
  2. Mahé and Félicité are islands of the Seychelles, which has in total a number of 42 islands.
  3. The Ex-Sultan of Perak. Straits Times Weekly Issue. 30 August 1889. p2. This short article described a visit by John Henniker-Heaton, a British MP, to Sultan Abdullah, following which he wrote to the Secretary of State for the Colonies urging that Tuanku was allowed to visit England.

36 thoughts on “26th Sultan of Perak: Sultan Abdullah Muhammad Shah II ibni Almarhum Sultan Jaafar Safiuddin Muazzam Shah (1874-1876)

  1. Salam…!

    What a coincident..! I just finished writing about Sultan Ismail. You are writing about Sultan Abdullah…hehe..! I just found Sultan Ismail’s makam at Mahmoodiah graveyard at Johor Bahru, this morning, after a lots of walking..! Take a look..you can take the photos for your reference. By the way, I stole a Sultans’ salasilah from your web (of course with credit to your web)…hehe…jangan marah aaa..! Oo ya…the story add… http://merbawi.blogspot.com/2009/07/mencari-makam-sultan-ismail-muabidin.html

    Azmi @ Merbawi
    P/s : Abang Raja, boleh saya request to link my blog to your web?

    • Saudara Azmi,

      Salam perkenalan dari SembangKuala. Alhamdulillah SembangKuala kini sudah ada satu lagi pertalian dengan blog lain yang memaparkan sejarah kegemilangan Perak. Tujuan utama blog ini adalah untuk memaparkan sejarah yang telah kian pudar dimata kita semua dan juga untuk mencelikkan mata generasi yang muda akan sejarah Perak yang gemilang. Kami alu-alukan sumbangan saudara terhadap perjalan mencari sejarah yang silam ini. Sembangkuala berbesar hati akan menggunakan posting saudara mengenai Almarhum Sultan Ismail Mu’abidin Riayat Shah , dan kami juga ada membuat kaitan “link” dengan blog saudara. Salam persaudaraan.

      Editor SembangKuala

  2. Saudara Azmi,

    About the salasilah that u taken from sembangkuala, there’s an updated version. Could you please use that instead. The changes was DYAM Raja Ahmad Hisham was the son of Raja Abdul Malik & not Raja Said Tauphy.

    Apa2 let us know. Keep in touch!

    Editors SembangKuala

  3. Abang Engku,

    Terima kasih atas “link” yang dibenarkan. I really appreciate it! Now my friends know about your web, I think they will like it. Some of them have visited and writing about the old story and Sultans’ makam in Perak.
    On the changes on the chart, i noted about it and will make a note in my blog.
    Just wonder, whether you have the names of all the pawang besar and Mak andam who have given their services to the Istana in your keeping? If you have that will be great.

    nanti kita labun lagi..! (another word for sembang….but please dont change your web add to LABUNKUALA…hehe!)


  4. Salam,

    Last weekend I had a long discussion with Ku Nyum (Raja Azmatul Azfa bt Raja Muhammad Iskandar @ Yong Namad) while going thru the charts on Sultan Iskandar’s family that I prepared. Ku Nyum told me that Allahyarham Raja Ismail had written on Sejarah Perak but she had forgotten to bring the book with her. She mentioned the book when I enquired where to get info on Pawang Raja Ali bin Raja Kulop Muhammad

    However, since I had to rush back to KL Sunday morning, I didnt get the chance to see the book yet.

    Perhaps Sembang Kuala might want to check with her about it.

  5. Salam Editors,
    Maaf ya, I am using this premise to response to Encik Azmi.

    Salam Encik Azmi,
    Buat masa sekarang saya masih belum membaca buku yang ditulis oleh Raja Ismail ibni Sultan Iskandar itu.

    Yang pasti, salah seorang pawang diraja bernama Raja Ali bin Raja Muhammad Iskandar @ Raja Kulop Muhammad. Beliau lahir sekitar tahun 1906 dan meninggal pada 2.8.1977. Anak perempuannya, Allahyarham Raja Nor Izah merupakan isteri pertama Sultan Idris 2 (bercerai). Raja Ali juga ialah adik kepada Raja Perempuan Kelsom dan datuk saya Raja Yaacob (saudara seibu sebapa berbondakan Raja Sofiah bt Raja Pandak Ibrahim).

    Anak lelaki Raja Ali meninggal semasa kecil jadi tiada yang mewarisi jawatan pawang dalam keluarga ini (sepanjang pengetahuan saya).

    Salasilah Raja Ali adalah seperti berikut:

    Raja Ali bin Raja Muhammad Iskandar bin Raja Bendahara Alang Iskandar (Marhum Teja) bin Raja Ahmad (hilang setelah terjatuh di Sungai Terus) bin Sultan Abdul Malik Mansur Shah (Sultan Perak ke19).


  6. assalamualaikum rakan rakan sembangkuala,saya berpendapat ruangan sembangkuala ini amat sesuai untuk kita bertukar pendapat dan gambar gambar sejarah spt apa yang dapat dilihat sekarang….saya adalah anak kepada almarhum raja di hilir perak raja ekram hasil perkawninan dengan bonda raja nor ema …….selamat berkenalan.

    • Salam perkenalan, Engku – Ayah patek dulu ‘ngam’ dengan your Almarhum father, who used to come to visit my dad and uncle in Ipoh at Istana Bendahara (my grandfather was also RDH PK – Raja Kam). -M.

      • Salam Mahariz,

        You mentioned a ‘Istana Bendahara’in Ipoh. Was it the official residence of the RDH then? Do you have pictures or any other information about it, like the address or general area? I’m interested to go locate it if the building is still standing.

        I remember when I visited the Kampong Paloh mosque, I was informed that the late Raja Ali bin Raja Mansur ibni Almarhum Sultan Abdullah used to frequent the mosque as he used to live with his brother who was the RDH then. Apparently the RDH’s istana was located nearby. I wonder if the said istana is one & the same with Istana Bendahara that you mentioned.

        Ende Yam

    • Salam. Anak2 raja ada ramai lagi dan anak RDH Raja Kamaralzaman ada seramai 22 atau 24 orang. Salah seorang adik beradik engku ada gerai minuman di R&R Sg Perak?

  7. Salams dear editors,

    I learn much more from just one posting about Almarhum Sultan Abdullah in your blog than the pages from other sources combined. Your post is a significant contribution on our rich history. Thank you!

    This is the first time I see his residence in Seychelles. Quite a sad sight actually …

    One observation .. if Almarhum was given the posthumous title of Marhum Habibullah, it suggests that he was recognized as a legitimate Sultan. But then, wonder why there’s an ‘ex’ infront of his name as in Raja Khairul Kamariah ibni Ex-Sultan Abdullah. That is how her father’s name is recorded in official records and it is even carried on her tombstone(following her IC). Quite demeaning really …

    • Salam nde Yam – The ex- prefix was given by the British. I don’t think any rakyat Perak think of him as an ‘ex-Sultan’ as such. The British also made sure Raja Yusuf was not made Sultan, not until 1887, following which Almarhum Sultan Yusuf mangkat soon after. The ugly side to colonialism, when external forces determine the law of the land, which is not theirs in the first place.


  8. Pingback: Perihal Perak: I. Geografi dan sejarah negeri, bah.2 « SembangKuala BLOG

  9. Salam. Saya adalah salah satu keturunan Sultan Abdullah dan datuk saya adalah RAJA AHMAD BIN RAJA MANSOR BIN RAJA CHULAN. Sesiapa yang ada carta tersebut tolong inform kepada saya. Ibu saya bernama RAJA FATIMAH BT.RAJA AHMAD yang dilahirkan di Istana Bukit Chandan yang lebih dikenali sebagai RAJA MARIAM, sekarang berada di K.L. Adik datuk saya bernama RAJA IBRAHIM iaitu bapa kepada RAJA EMMA. TQ

    • Salam. Kenyataan “Raja Ahmad bin Raja Mansor bin RAJA CHULAN” di atas – adaka saudari maksudkan Raja Mansor ibni SULTAN ABDULLAH, jika saudari keturunan Almarhum? Raja Chulan dan Raja Mansor adalah adik-beradik, dan anak kepada isteri Almarhum Sultan Abdullah yang sama – Raja Tipah.

      Saya juga dari keturunan Raja Mansor (Allahyarham merupakan ayah kepada datuk saya, Almarhum Raja Kamaralzaman RDH Perak 1948-1962) dan saya pernah berjumpa Raja Ibrahim lebih kurang 20 tahun yang lalu. Pengetahuan saya tentang susur galur anak-anak Raja Mansor agak terhad kepada anak-anak Allahyarham yang bernama Raja Kamaralzaman, Raja Badiozaman, Raja Teh Mariam dan Raja Ali Shah.

      Nama isteri-isteri Allahyarham Raja Mansor yang terkemudian, termasuk bonda kepada Raja Ibrahim dan datuk saudari, tidak saya ketahui, lebih-lebih lagi nama-nama anak-anak dari isteri-isteri ini. Kami akan cuba memaparkan carta susur galur Raja Mansor ibni Sultan Abdullah dengan fakta-fakta yang ada pada kami dalam masa terdekat, insyaAllah. Jika saudari ada maklumat lanjut kami alu-alukan.


      -Raja Mahariz Raja Muzaffar

      • T/kasih. Ibu saya juga digelar Raja Payong. T/kasih juga kerana membetulkan Raja Chulan dan Raja Mansor memang adik beadik. Nanti saya cuba mendapat info yg betul dari ibu saya – ini no hp saya 012 9341718.

  10. Salam nde. Yes, it was but the house is no more. It was located at the junction of Jalan Datoh and Jalan Bendahara if I’m not mistaken. A photo of the Istana can be seen here: http://stomachofchaos.com/?p=2510

    The late Raja Ali Shah (ayah Chu as my father called him) did live with Tok Kam, and in his later years, close to Almarhum Raja DH Ekram.


  11. Pingback: Chura Si-Manjakini « SembangKuala BLOG

  12. Salam – saya antara keturunan Sultan Abdullah. Zaman Sultan Abdullah, Pawang Diraja-nya juga adalah cilawangi saya (ATAS 6 KETURUNAN) iaitu nama nya Cik Muda Pawang Diraja Raja Shah Kobat. Nenek saya cucu Sultan Abdullah, dan tinggal di Istana Raja Bendahara di Jalan Datoh, Ipoh. Opah saya anak kepada TEH HAWA, orang kaya Ipoh, isteri kepada YAM Raja Mansur ibni Sultan Abdullah.

    • Salam. Raja Ali Shah adalah anak kepada Raja Mansur dan Teh Hawa. Mengikut maklumat yang kami ada Raja Ali Shah merupakan anak tunggal hasil dari perkahwinan ini. Oleh itu jika saudara sudi memberi maklumat lanjut, kami sangat alu-alukan! 😀 Siapakah nama opah yang saudara Nor Azree maksudkan? -M.

      • Salam – Saya Nor Haniza Bt Nordin, dan saya ternampak blog ni, dan ingin berkongsi sedikit informasi mengenai salasilah di atas. Ibu saya RAJA NAZAZIAH BT RAJA ALI SHAH hasil perkahwinan RAJA ALI SHAH dengan TENGKU INTAN ZORAMAHNUM BT SULTAN AMALUDIN THANI PERKASA ALAM SHAH (nenek saya). Setahu saya, Raja Ali Shah dengan Tengku Intan ada sepupu:

        Raja Abdullah
        Raja Mansur & Raja Halijah (Beradik )
        I I
        Raja Ali Shah & Raja Intan Zoramahnum ( sepupu )
        Raja Nazaziah
        Nor Haniza

        Setakat ini yang saya ketahui. Besarlah harapan saya sekiranya ada waris yg ingin menghubungi saya: 0133220434 & email – cleoneeza@yahoo.com


  13. Bapa saya dari keturunan kesultanan Deli iaitu DYMM Sultan Amaluddin Al Sani. Jadi, sesiapa nak berkongsi maklumat bolehlah hubungi saya di talian 019-2287252.

  14. Opah saya bernama Sariyah tingal di istana di Jln Bendahara, Ipoh. Opah saya berkahwin dgn datok saya ketika berumur 12 tahun pada tahun 30an. Kami rapat dgn keluarga Almarhum DYAM Raja Hj Kamaralzaman iaitu YM Raja Lope dan keluarga Almarhum Raja Dato Seri Ahmad Hisham iaitu YM Raja Amiriah dan YM Raja Aishah serta kaum kerabat lain. Tahukah sedara dimana arwah Teh Hawa dikebumikan? Datok saya kebumikan di kampung kami.

  15. Raja Ali Shah @ Raja Lope ada anak lelaki serta cucu nya bersahabat dgn saya. Almarhum Raja Ali Shah ada berkahwin dgn orang seberang iaitu anak Raja Deli. Semasa kemangkatan nya Almarhum Sultan Idris ada mengarahkan tanda berkabung turun bendera Perak separuh tiang.

  16. Sultan Abdullah
    Raja Mansur
    Raja Kamaralzaman
    Raja Hizad (anak bongsu>>Bonda Hajjah Hafsah)

    • Salam Ayah Hizad – You may remember me from the reunion dinner at Ayah Kassim’s Raya dinner in 2009 (I’m Ku Pa’s son). I am one of the editors of this website. There’s a few more posts on Mohom Abdullah and Tok Kam in this site, so please click away! Thanks for visiting. -Mahariz

  17. Pingback: Almarhum Sultan Abdullah: an addendum | SembangKuala

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

  19. Pingback: YAM Raja Zainal Azman ibni Raja Sir Chulan (Raja Kechil Bongsu: 1948-1956) | SembangKuala

  20. maaf , soalan sy yg sebenar berbunyi begini, adakah pename eperti TEH’ (contoh ‘teh sidah’) adakah gelaran ini ada kaitan dgn institusi beraja di perak? mohon penerangan dati admin.

  21. I am currently engaged in further research into the family of the Sultan of Deli (Sumatra) and came across another interesting link between Perak and Deli. The Dutch and Sumatra newspapers report the marriage of a certain Princess Noerija (Dutch spelling) to the then Tengku Pangeran of Padang, in Bedagai, Deli. She is described as the daughter of the Sultan of Perak and younger sister of the wife of the then Tengku Besar of Deli (later Sultan ‘Amal ud-din II Perkasa ‘Alam Shah ibni al-Marhum Sultan Ma’amun al-Rashid Perkasa ‘Alam Shah) – “Rotterdamsch Nieuwsblad”, 20 July 1923, No 46, 13897. Since Tengku Besar financed the celebrations and his wife is described as the lady’s sister, she must have been a daughter of ex-Sultan Abdullah. Does anyone know if Noerija is the same as his daughter Raja Noyah, who married Tengku Idham Laut [Edham Laoet] of Bedagai, Deli, or of this is yet another daughter nor mentioned previously?

  22. Dear Chris,

    Exactly. She was actually Raja Noyah binti Almarhum Ex-Sultan Abdullah who married to Tengku Idham Laut (Pengeran Bedagai) and I have seen this newspaper cutting before. She is younger sister of Tengku Permaisuri Halijah of Deli. By the way, I am now also doing a bit of research on some stories (marriage, death, etc) of the children / descendant of ex-Sultan Abdullah of Perak which one of them is my great-grandmother.

  23. Saya terbaca dala perak royal ark…salasilah Sultan Abdullah 2. Baginda mempunyai anak bernama Raja Sulaiman Raja Abdullah selain anak-anak yang bernama Raja Ngah Mansur, Raja Chulan, Raja Malik. Saya nak cari ada sesiapa tahu atau waris Raja Sulaiman ni…masih ada atau beliau tiada keturunannya…013 3887989 (amin)

  24. SAya sedang mencari salasilah keluarga saya yang juga waris Sultan Abdullah. Kalau dapat, nak cari senarai nama anak2 (cucu2 Sultan) dari setiap ibu. Mungkin dari situ, saya boleh trace roots saya.

    Please email to me @ dezinar@yahoo.com


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