(3,769 words)

Archaeologists have found evidence of trade between India and Southeast Asia as early as the 4th–2nd centuries BCE. In India Southeast Asia came to be known as Suvarṇabhūmi (“Land of Gold”), but merchants also sought tin, needed to make bronze, spices, aromatic woods, and rattans there. In the early centuries of the Common Era, trade expanded significantly as Indian and Malay merchant-seafarers stopped in ports on the South China Sea on trade routes connecting China and India, where the Pallava dynasty (2nd–9th cents. CE) gradually emerged as the predominant power on the …

Cite this page
Elizabeth Fuller Collins, “Malaysia”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Edited by: Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 24 February 2019 <>
First published online: 2012

▲   Back to top   ▲