Sites & cities that bear the name of Singapore


Today in : Singapore
First trace of activity : ca. 3rd century C.E
Last trace of activity : today
Recorded names : Sabara?, Sabana?, Tam ma siak?, Danmaxi?, Tumasik, Temasek, Pulau Ujong, 蒲羅中, Pú Luó Zhōng, 𑀲𑀺𑀁𑀳𑀧𑀼𑀭, siṃhapuram, सिंहपुर, Singapura, , Siṃhapura, Syonan, 昭南, Shōnan

Description : Singapore,, officially the Republic of Singapore, is a sovereign island city-state in maritime Southeast Asia. It lies about one degree of latitude (137 kilometres or 85 miles) north of the equator, off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, bordering the Straits of Malacca to the west, the Riau Islands (Indonesia) to the south, and the South China Sea to the east. The country's territory is composed of one main island, 63 satellite islands and islets, and one outlying islet, the combined area of which has increased by 25% since the country's independence as a result of extensive land reclamation projects. It has the second greatest population density in the world. The country has almost 5.7 million residents, 61% (3.4 million) of whom are Singaporean citizens. There are four official languages of Singapore: English, Malay, Chinese and Tamil, with English being the lingua franca. Multiracialism is enshrined in the constitution, and continues to shape national policies in education, housing, and politics. Although its history stretches back millennia, modern Singapore was founded in 1819 by Sir Stamford Raffles as a trading post of the British Empire. In 1867, the colonies in East Asia were reorganised and Singapore came under the direct control of Britain as part of the Straits Settlements. During the Second World War, Singapore was occupied by Japan in 1942, but returned to British control as a separate crown colony following Japan's surrender in 1945. Singapore gained self-governance in 1959, and in 1963 became part of the new federation of Malaysia, alongside Malaya, North Borneo, and Sarawak. Ideological differences led to Singapore being expelled from the federation two years later, thereby becoming an independent country. The first possible mention of early Singapore dates to 2nd century CE cartographic references in the Greco-Roman astronomer Ptolemy's Geographia. A place called Sabana or Sabara was marked on the 11th Map of Asia at the southern tip of the Golden Khersonese (meaning the Malay Peninsula) where Singapore may lie. It was identified as a nominon emporion or designated foreign trading port, as part of a chain of similar trading centres that linked Southeast Asia with India and the Mediterranean. Identification of Sabana or Sabara however varies, with various authors proposing it to be in Selangor or near Klang, or just south of Malacca, or south Johor, as well as Singapore island itself. No archaeological evidence from this period has yet been found in Singapore. A 3rd century Chinese written record described the island of Pu Luo Chung (蒲羅中), probably a transcription of the Malay Pulau Ujong, "island at the end" (of the Malay peninsula). It mentions briefly a hearsay account of cannibals with 5 or 6 inch tails living there. A large boulder measuring 3 metres in height and width, inscribed with writings, used to exist at the mouth of the Singapore River, but was later blown up when Fort Fullerton was expanded and the river mouth widened. Only a few fragments survive, and it became known as the Singapore Stone. Various dates between 10th to 13th century have been proposed for the inscriptions that is as yet undeciphered, and the script is suggested to be related to that used in Sumatran in that period. Mao Kun map from Wubei Zhi based on the early 15th century navigation maps of Zheng He, showing Temasek (淡馬錫) at the top left, and Longyamen (龍牙門) in the right panel. Temasek was described as having two different settlements by Wang Dayuan, Longyamen and Banzu. Early Singapore was called "Temasek", possibly a word deriving from "tasik" (Malay for lake or sea) and taken to mean Sea-town in Malay. The Nagarakretagama, a Javanese epic poem written in 1365, listed a settlement on the island called Tumasik as a vassal of the Majapahit. The name is also mentioned in the Malay Annals thought to have been written in 1535. Temasek may have diplomatic relationship with Vietnam, which recorded it as Sach Ma Tich, as early as the 13th century. It is also recorded by the Chinese traveller Wang Dayuan who visited the island around 1330 and described a place called Dan Ma Xi (單馬錫, a transcription of the Malay Temasek). The name Dan Ma Xi or Temasek is written in Chinese as 淡馬錫 in the Mao Kun map.

See on map »