Bugis People Sulawesi Selatan Province


Bugis girl with traditional costume

The Bugis people live in the province of South Sulawesi covers an area around 100.457 square kilo meters, with total population around 5.600.000. This people is famous for their expert in sailing on the deep ocean. The Bugis region is called Tellumponcoe, and it consists of the regencies of Bone, Wajo, and Soppeng. There are also Bugis people settled throughout the regencies of Luwu, Sidenreng, Polewal Mamasa, Pinrang, Pare-pare, Barru, Pangkajene, Maros, Bulukumba, and Sinjai. The Bugis are a dynamic and highly mobile people, considered by many to be the dominant people group in South Sulawesi. Many Bugis have left their home area to seek success and wealth. In particular, they have migrated to Sumbawa, Jawa, Papua, and even Malaysia. Their Ugi language is divided into several dialects, namely Luwu, Wajo, Bira Selayar, Palaka, Sindenreng Rappang and Sawito.


Kipas Dance of Makassar

The Bugis people are famous for their fervent adherence to Islam. However, many of them are still bound to their traditional system of animistic beliefs (panngaderreng). In part due to its religious values, traditional culture has a significant impact on the Bugis.


The Civil Servant Girl in Makassar City used "Baju Bodo" Traditional Costume

Most Bugis people make their living by hunting, fishing, farming, raising livestock or making handicrafts. Typically, the Bugis who live in the mountain ranges gain their livelihood by working the soil, while those living in the coastal areas generally work as fishermen. The Bugis traditional dress is called Wajo Ponco, which is believed to have originated from Melayu (Malay) dress. Currently, the dress is only used for traditional ceremonies and dances. The Bugis believe very strongly that certain days are good days, with good fortune for events and activities held on the first Wednesday and last Thursday of each month. Conversely, they consider Saturday to be a bad day, with misfortune more likely to happen on this day. In Bugis tradition there are different levels of social status that are based upon one's ancestors. These different levels include descendants of a king, descendants of nobles (La Patau), descendants of district administrators (Aru Lili) and descendants of various kinds of slaves. Two of the most important cultural values for the Bugis people are called siri (personal honor) and siri-pesse (communal honor). A Bugis person must defend, maintain, and build one's own siri. The effort to obtain and maintain siri varies according to the context. For instance, in an economic context, siri means working hard and being faithful. In a personal context, if one's siri is offended serious forms of revenge will be considered.


Bugis Couple in Wedding Party

Ninety percent (90%) of the population is Moslem, and 10% Christian and others. Moslem was started in 17th century. However local tradition before was still alive such as concept of organization and life ethic wich all now incorporated into Moslem. Other tradition is relected in a book written in the past such as the ar of La Galigo story. Islam reinforced the traditional Bugis concept of siri in such a way that today the typical Bugis person sees siri as the key to his or her self-identity as a Bugis Muslim. The Bugis line of descent is bilateral (traced through both parents). After marriage the newlyweds may choose to live near either the husband's or wife's family, although initially, they live at least briefly near the wife's family.