Mysterious Kubur Bagunjai at Mentiri

For tomorrow's Golden Legacy article to be published in Brunei Times, I will be writing about Kampung Mentiri. I found an old research done by Museum Department during the construction of the Mengkubau Dam at Mentiri when they found several graveyards. One of them is the Bagunjai Graveyard. This is an excerpt from tomorrow's article:-

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The archaeologists paid close scrutiny to the two gravestones at Kubur Bagunjai. The two gravestones or batu nisan indicated the high status of the person buried. In the older days, most graves would only be placed with one gravestone. Two gravestones indicated someone respected or hold high status in the area when he died. Among old graveyards discovered in Brunei, the two gravestones for Sultan Bolkiah’s tomb was one of the few found so far.

The gravestones at Kubur Bagunjai were found to be the same design of another three gravestones found in other places in Brunei and dated around the 15th or 16th century. A similar gravestone found in Jalan Residency showed that the grave belong to a Brunei noble named Cheteria Pengiran Maharaja. So it is possible that the grave at Kubur Bagunjai would be of someone of an equivalent status.

It would be interesting if one can discover his name and how he ended up buried around Kampung Mentiri. Most importantly the discovery of this grave outlined how important Kampung Mentiri was in the older days.

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Read tomorrow's Brunei Times.

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