The Kingdom of Champa
History & Civilization.

:: POPULATION

There are two groups of champa citizens:

. One group resides in the coastal area
. The other group lives in the highland regions.

Both groups speak the Austronesia language, and practice matrilineal and matrilocal system.

The Champa Kingdom is a poly-ethic nation made up of several ethic groups including Rhade, Jarai, Hroi, Raglai, Bahnar, Sedang, Mnong, Stieng and Ma.



Language:

There were two forms of writing in Champa, the Sanskrit and the ancient Cham writing. The first stone tablet written in the Champa language was dated to the 4th Century and the last stone tablet found in 1253 inscriptions is in Sanskrit. After the 4th Century, manuscripts replaced the epigraph. Towards the 15th Century, four new forms of writing continue to exist until today - replaced the ancient Cham writing.

Clothing:

Tradition clothing is in the most prominent in showing the close relationship and influence of the Peninsular Malays on the Chams.

The traditional Champa costumes and the way they are worn are quite unique. The Nobility and the Commoners. The Nobility costume must be worn during ceremonies to distinguish a society. It composed of an outfit made of four parts, namely, the headgear, a pair of "baju" (tunis and trouser), the belt and the sarong.

For the commoners, costumes worn depended on occasion. Men wear sarong with a long scarf on their shoulder and head.
Women with a long tunis or a "baju kurung" and a scarf on the head complete with accessories on their necks, hands according to their position and status on the society.

This complete costume is called "Aw tah" meaning a long tunis that is similar to the Malays "Baju Kurung"

The Chams are experts in processing threads for cloth weaving according to Chinese sources. The Champa Textile Industry is known for silk worms and Cotton, which clothing for loyalties and nobility only. The Textile Industry continued to be an important activity inherited through the various generations in the Champa society in Indochina, particularly in Vietnam.

The weaving industry helps create a heritage identity for Champa besides a source of income. At Phan Rang and Phan Ri, the weaving industry can be found in several specialized villages like at Caklaing and Tanran Villages in the Ninh Thuan Province (Central of Vietnam).

The Champa cultural and artistic features which are connected to and strongly influenced by the Malaysian Culture based on their unique heritage and way of life.

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