List of loanwords in Indonesian

The Indonesian language has absorbed many loanwords from other languages, including Sanskrit, Arabic, Persian, Portuguese, Dutch, Chinese and other Austronesian languages.

Indonesian differs from the Malaysian language in a number of respects, primarily due to the different influences both languages experienced and also due to the fact that majority of Indonesians speaks their native language as their first. Bahasa Indonesia function as lingua franca that unites 200 various languages over the archipelago.

Vice versa, many words of Malay-Indonesian origin have also been borrowed into English. Words borrowed into English (e.g., bamboo, orangutan, dugong, amok, and even "cooties") generally entered through Malay language by way of British colonial presence in Malaysia and Singapore, similar to the way the Dutch have been borrowing words from the various native Indonesian languages. One exception is "bantam", derived from the name of the Indonesian province Banten in Western Java (see Oxford American Dictionary, 2005 edition). Another is "lahar" which is Javanese for a volcanic mudflow. Still other words taken into modern English from Malay/Indonesian probably have other origins (e.g., "satay" from Tamil, or "ketchup" from Chinese).

At its development stage, various native terms (mostly Javanese) from all over the archipelago made its way to the language. The Dutch adaptation of the Malay language during colonial period had resulted significant amount of Dutch loanwords and vocabulary. The event significantly affected the original Malay language which gradually developed into the modern Indonesian language.


The study on Indonesian etymology and loan words reflected its historical and social context. Examples are the early Sanskrit borrowings probably in the Srivijaya period, the borrowings from Arabic and Persian during the time of the establishment of Islam in particular, and the ones from Dutch during the colonial period. Linguistic history and cultural history are clearly linked.[1]

But the processes may also be ‘out of period’; for example, Indonesian words are still being concocted from Sanskrit, and the influence of the Dutch language certainly continued after the Dutch themselves left.[1]

Indonesian has also generalized brand names into common (lower-case) nouns as generic name. For example, "sanyo" refers to any electrical well pump, regardless of manufacturer or "odol" as all of toothpastes. This is similar to the type of generalization that occurs in English words like "xerox" or "tampax" or "polaroid".

List of loanwords

From Austronesian languages

From Minangkabau

Most of Indonesian languages vocabulary are natively derived from Malay, but some might be ultimately loanwords from Minang language. Yet it is unclear, since Malay and Minang are closely related, and some might consider that Minang language was a precursor or old dialect of Malay language.[2]

Word Meaning Original word
acuh careful acuah
anjungan pavilion anjuang
awak you (regional), crew, member awak
bantah denies bantah
baruh lowland baruah
bernas spirited boneh
bunda mother bundo
buyung sonny buyuang
cabul lewd cabua
cakak fight cakak
campin skilled campin
cegak vigorous cegak
celoteh babble ciloteh
cemeeh jeer cemeeh
cengang amazed cangang
dara girl, virgin, dove daro
dadih buttermilk dadiah
dendang sing dendang
gadang large gadang
gadis girl, virgin gadih
gaek aged gaek
galau confusion galau
gelimang mixed galimang
gengsi prestige gengsi
heboh commotion, fuss heboh: noisy
himbau call imbau
jangat skin jangek
jenjang ladder janjang
jerang boiled jarang
jinjing pick-up jinjiang
junjung respectful junjuang
kelok meanders kelok
lamban slow lamban
lancang sassy lancang
nan which, who (connecting word) nan
ngarai canyon ngarai
nian very, really, trully nian
pencak art (martial art) pancak
penghulu chief of family panghulu
ranah realm, domain ranah: land
rancak beautiful rancak
rantau foreign country rantau
rendang rendang randang
sanak family sanak
semarak splendor semarak
silat silat (martial art) silek
surau mosque surau
tandas demolished tandeh
teroka open up new areas taruko
terompah sandals tarompah
tuah good luck tuah
tungkai leg tungkai
usang obsolete usang

From Javanese

Compared to Malay language spoken as the native regional language in Sumatra and Malay peninsula or standardized version of Malaysian language, Indonesian language differ profoundly by a large amount of Javanese loanwords incorporated into their already rich vocabulary. This is mostly contributed by Java's position as the center of Indonesian politics, education, and culture, since the capital is located in Jakarta on Java island, albeit in the area where the Javanese are not the majority. The disproportionate number of Javanese that dominate the Indonesian politics is reflected by the fact that six out of seven Indonesian presidents have been ethnic Javanese. The result is that the Javanese began to pour their own vocabulary into Indonesian to describes terms and words that do not have exact counterparts in Malay language. It is also important to note that most of Indonesian Sanskrit loanwords are derived and conducted through Old Javanese, a language whose Sanskrit borrowings number almost 50% of the total vocabulary.

Word Meaning Original word
adem cool temperature adhem
adiluhung/adiluhur refined, highly sophisticated taste adiluhung
amblas vanish amblas
ambruk collapse ambruk
among nurture among
ampuh potent ampuh
anggun graceful anggun
angker haunted angker
anjlok dropped anjlok
antek stooge antek
anyar new anyar
apik neat, nice apik
asri beautiful (scenery/nature), neat, clean, nice asri
ayu beautiful (women), pretty, gorgeous, graceful, elegant ayu
ayom give shade, foster, protect ayom, hangayomi
baluwarti palace fortified wall baluwerti
bangsal hall bangsal, ultimately from Sanskrit: sala (room)
batik batik mbatik, from: amba-nitik
bejat depraved bejat
beres completed beres
betot pull suddenly betot
bopong carry bopong
brandal thugs brandalan
bromocorah criminal bromocorah
buron/buronan runaway or fugitive buron: from buru-an (to be hunted)
candi temple candhi
canggih sophisticated canggih
cebol midget cebol
celingukan look around celingukan
ceplas ceplos speak out frankly ceplas ceplos
copet pick pocket copet
dengkul knee dengkul
doyan be fond doyan
edan crazy edhan
empu maestro, master craftsman mpu
ganteng handsome ngganteng
gebrakan blow gebrakan
gede big gede
gembok padlock gembok
gendong pickaback gendong
gerebek raid grebeg: traditional ceremony involving mass competing to grab sacred objects
gilas run over giles
gosong scorched gosong
irit frugal irit
jagal butcher jagal
jago skillful, expert jago: rooster
jagoan tough guy, hero jago: rooster
jajan snack jajan
kedut twitching kedutan
kemben torso wrap kembhen
kesurupan possessed surup: fit, enter
konde bulbous hairdo or hair extension on the back of the head kondhe
lara sadness (poetic) lara: sickness
larung intentionally swept or send away through water (river/sea) larung
lapik base lapik
luhur noble, high dhuwur, luhur
manut obedient manut
melengos looked away melengos
minggat flee minggat
mumpuni accomplished mumpuni
nganggur idle, jobless nganggur
nusantara Indonesian archipelago, archipelago nusantara
pagar langkan balustrade pagar langkan
pamrih intention pamrih
pemirsa viewers pemirsa
pendopo roofed front open hall pendhopo, ultimately from Sanskrit: mandapa (front hall as part of temple)
pilek flu pilek
resik clean, well maintained resik
sedot suck sedot
selaras harmonious slaras
selingkuh affair selingkuh
semberono careless sembrono
semrawut complicated mess, out of order semrawut
sungkan shy sungkan
tembang song tembang
tentram peaceful tentrem
titisan reincarnated nitis
tuntas complete tuntas
undakan stages undhak
unduh download unduh
unggah upload munggah
umpak base umpak

From Sundanese

Other than Javanese, Sundanese is another local language that influences Indonesian language's vocabulary, albeit to a lesser extent. This is attributed to the fact that the capital, Jakarta, was formerly a part of West Java, a province which, together with Banten before it too was divided, constitutes the Pasundan (Sundanese world), the most significant non-Javanese region in an otherwise Javanese-dominated Java island. Some of the most populated cities in Indonesia are also located in the Pasundan, including West Java's capital, Bandung, and Jakarta's four satellite cities (Bekasi, Bogor, Depok, and Tangerang).

Word Meaning Original word
aci tapioca flour aci sampeu
amburadul mess, something out of order amburadul
anjangsana high official visiting anjangsana
balairung hall bale riung: traditional building for meeting
bloon (spelled blo-'on) stupid blo'on/o'on
getol active getol
hatur to express, to send (polite) haturkeun
jangkung tall jangkung
juara champion, winner jawara: tough guy, fighter, hero
kedap proof as in "kedap air" (waterproof) kedap
kesima awe, amaze kesima
kesohor famous kasohor
kolot old fashioned kolot: old
lalap raw vegetable, consumed lalab
majikan boss majikan
menyaru pretending, camouflaging verbal form of saru: undistinguishable
patungan chip in, joint-venture, collecting money to buy something for common use patungan
pemulung waste picker noun of the verb pulung: pick
pengaruh influence pangaruh
pepes cooking method using banana leaf wrapping papais: plural form of pais
risih uneasy, uncomfortable risih
siksa torture siksa: education
uwa uncle or aunty older than parent uwa

From Betawi

Betawi language is a Malay-based creole that arose from influences by foreign traders who stopped at the capital, Jakarta, including the Chinese and the Arabs. Most of its speakers are the inhabitants of Jakarta, and its influence to Indonesian is attributed to its frequent usage in Indonesian mass media, including radio and television. Its status as a "hip" language by other aspects of Indonesian society is another contributing factor as well.

Word Meaning Original word
abal-abal fake, false abal-abal
bangkotan aged bangkotan
begah replete begah
butut old fashioned butut
cebur splash cebur
entot copulate entot
gelandang football midfielder, bringer gelandang
gelandangan homeless gelandangan
mampus dead mampus
ngamen street performance ngamen
ribet complicated, hard, not easy ribet
rombeng rags rombeng
timpuk throw timpuk
udak chase udak

From Nias

Word Meaning Original word
anda you (respectful) anda

From Batak

Word Meaning Original word
molek voluptuous molek

From Maluku

Word Meaning Original word
beta I, me, myself béta

From Manado

Word Meaning Original word
pasti surely so pasti

From Indian languages

From Sanskrit

Although Hinduism and Buddhism are no longer the major religions of Indonesia, Sanskrit which was the language vehicle for these religions, is still held in high esteem and is comparable with the status of Latin in English and other Western European languages. Sanskrit is also the main source for neologisms, these are usually formed from Sanskrit roots. For example, the name of Jayapura city (former Hollandia) and Jayawijaya Mountains (former Orange Range) in Indonesian province of Papua were coined in the 1960s, both are Sanskrit origin name to replace its Dutch colonial names. Some Indonesian contemporary medals of honor and awards; such as Bintang Mahaputra medal, Kalpataru award and Adipura award, are also Sanskrit derived names.

The loanwords from Sanskrit cover many aspects of religion, art and everyday life. The Sanskrit influence came from contacts with India long ago before the 1st century. The words are either directly borrowed from India or with the intermediary of the Old Javanese language. In the classical language of Java, Old Javanese, the number of Sanskrit loanwords is far greater. The Old Javanese — English dictionary by prof. P.J. Zoetmulder, S.J. (1982) contains no fewer than 25,500 entries. Almost half are Sanskrit loanwords. Sanskrit loanwords, unlike those from other languages, have entered the basic vocabulary of Indonesian to such an extent that, for many, they are no longer perceived to be foreign.

Word Meaning Original word
acar pickles achaar (Hindi)
acara event, item in a programme ācāra: custom, practice, behavior
adakala sometimes kadā-kāla: lit. whenever-time
adi ultimate (poetic) adhi
agama religion āgama: traditional doctrine, sacred teaching
aksara letter akṣara
alpa negligent alpa: small, minute
aneka multifarious, varied, all sorts aneka: many, various
anekaragam variety show aneka-rāgam: various color
anekawarna multi-coloured aneka-varṇa: variety of color
anggota limb, member aṅga-jāḥ: born from the body, limbs, member
angka numerical figure aṅka: numerical constant
angkara insolence, cruel ahaṁ-kāra: ego, pride-maker
angkasa sky ākāśa
angkasawan astronaut ākāśa-vān: the sky + having; possessing
angsa goose haṁsa: swan
angsana Pterocarpus Indica (tree) asana: Terminalia Tomen Indica (tree)
aniaya maltreatment, abuse, injustice, tyranny anyāya: sinful activities, mischief
antara among, (in) between antar: among, between, in the middle
anugerah award, honour, grace anugraha: to bestow blessings, compassion
arti meaning krti: understanding
asa hope āśā
asmara love, passion smara
asrama dormitory āśrama
atau or athavā: alternatively, or, either
ayah father ārya, ayya (same in Tamil and Telugu)
baca read vāc: words, talk
bagai as if, like bhaga: good fortune
bagi for, give bhāga: "(to) divide"
baginda majesty bhāgya: part, good fortune + -nda: Austronesian suffix
bagus fine, good, exemplary bhaga: good fortune, happiness, welfare
bahagia blissful, lucky, blessed, happy bhāgya: good fortune, luck, happiness
bahasa language bhāṣā
bahaya danger bhaya
bahtera ship vahitra: a boat, ship
bahu shoulder bāhu: arm
bahwa that (conj.) bhava: become, state of being
baiduri opal (gem) vaiḍūrya: cat's eye (gem)
bakti, bhakti homage, devotion, service etc. bhakti
bala disaster, calamity; also means help, assist bala: by the strength
bangsa nation, race vaṁśa: lineage, dynasty
bangsawan noble vaṁśa-vān: of the dynasty + having, possessing
barat west bhārata: India, located west from Indonesia
basmi eliminate, destroy bhasman: devour, consume, pulverize (to ashes)
bayu wind (poetic) vāyu: Hindu god of wind
bela defend velā: time-limit, boundary, interval
belaka merely bālaka: young
belanja shopping, expense valanja: that which is spent
belantara jungle vanāntara: (interior of a) forest
belia youth bālya: childhood age
bencana disaster, calamity vañcana: deception
berahi passionate love virahin: separated from one's beloved
berhala idol, image of a god bhaṭṭāra: lord
berita news varta
bestari clever vistārin: extending
biara monastery vihāra
biasa habitual, usual, ordinary abhyāsa: habit, repetition, custom, practice
biaya expense vyaya: loss, expense, spending
bicara speak vicāra: discussion, consideration
bidadari apsara, nymph, lesser female deities vidyādhari: fairy, sylph, (fem.) bearer of knowledge
bidan midwife vidvān: nom. masc. of vidvant: wise
bijak clever, wise vicakṣana
bijaksana clever, wise vicakṣana
biji seed bīja: seed
bila when vela (time)
bina to build bhinna: different, fresh, new
binaraga bodybuilding from combined words bina: to build and raga: body
binasa die, death, destroyed vināśa: destruction
bisa venom, malice; but also means can, able, potent viṣa: poison
buana world (poetic) bhuvana
budaya culture combination of boddhi: virtue and dhaya: power
budi reason, virtue buddhi: intellect, discernment, judgment
budiman kind, wise buddhimān: nom. of buddhi
bujangga scholar bhujaṅga: snake
bukti proof bhukti: enjoyment, fruition, possession
bumi earth bhūmi
bupati the title of regency/regional leader bhūpati: lord of the earth
busana clothing bhūṣaṇa
cahaya light chāyā: lustre, light
cakram, cakra disk, sphere etc. chakra
cakrawala horizon cakravāla: mythical mountains at the edge of light and dark
candi temple caṇḍika: another manifestation of Durga as goddess of death
cangkang shell śaṅkha: winged shell attribute of Vishnu
cerita story carita: narration, e.g. Buddhacarita
chandra moon (poetic), lunar candra: Hindu moon god
citra image citra: "picture" (Hindi, Sanskrit)
citrum pixel singular form back-formation of "citra"
dana donation, funds dāna
darma, dharma duty, good deeds (i.e. charity), truth etc. dharma
dasawarsa decade dasa: ten + varṣa: year, rain
daya power dhaya
denda fine, punishment daṇḍa
derma alms giving same origin with dharma
desa village deśa
dewa god deva
dewi goddess devī
dirgahayu long live dīrgha (long) + āyu (age); āyuṣā = with a life span
duka sadness duḥkha
durjana evil, wicked, malicious durjana
gajah elephant gaja
gapura gate gopura
gaya stylish, fashionable gaya: wealth, property
genta bell ghaṇṭa
gerhana eclipse grahaṇa: seizure, possession, eclipse
gita song (poetic) gīta
guna utilize, use, purpose guṇa: quality, attribute
guru teacher, guru guru
hina lowly, inferior hīna: small, lesser, petty
istri wife strī
jaga awake, guard jāgṛ, jāgara: to watch over, awake
jagat universe jagat
jala net, casting net jāla
jambu tree (Eugenia) jambu
jampi incantation japa
janda widow raṇḍa
jasa merit, service, etc. yaśas: worth, glory; vyāsa: service
jati tree (Tectonia grandis) jāti: tree (Jasminum grandiflorum)
jawa Java, Javanese yava: barley, grain
jaya glorious jaya
jelata common people janata
jelita lovely lalita
jelma incarnation, to become, to turn into janma: birth
jentera spinning, wheel yantra: instrument
jiwa life, soul, sanity jīva: (personal) soul
juta million ayuta: ten thousand, myriad
jutawan very rich ayuta+vān: ten thousand + having, possessing
kaca glass kāca: glass
kacamata glasses, spectacles kāca: glass
kala time kāla: time
kalau if kāla: time
kali time(s), in mathematics kāla: time
kanta lens kānta: sun-crystal
kapas cotton karpāsa
karena because kāraṇa: cause
karma karma karma: Hindu-Buddhist concept
karsa initiative, will karṣa: pulling, obtaining, mastering (√kṛṣ)
kartika star (poetic) kṛttikā, kārttika: constellation Pleiades, corresponding month (Oct-Nov)
karunia blessing karuṇa: compassion
karya work, oeuvre kārya
kasturi musk, musk flower (k.o. hibiscus) kastūrī: musk
kata word kathā: speech, talk, story
kati a hundred thousand koṭi: ten million
kelahi quarrel, fight kalaha
keling Indian, black-skinned kāliṅga: inhabitant of Kalinga, south Orissa, India
keluarga family kula-varga
kemboja flowering tree (Plumeria Acuminata) kāmboja
kencana gold, golden, grand, glorious kāñcana: gold
kendi water-pitcher kuṇḍa
kepala head kapāla: skull, cranium
keranda coffin karaṇḍa: basket, box
kerja work kārya: the work, the manifest products
ketika moment, when ghaṭakā: hour (24 minutes)
kian become more, as much (many) as kiyān: how much
kosakata vocabulary kośa: dictionary, lexicon, vocabulary
kota , city, town koṭa: stronghold
ksatria warrior, knight kṣatriya
kuasa power vaśa: power, control, dominion
kuda horse kudda
kumala jade, gemstone komala: gracious, charming
kumba pot kumbha
kunci key kucikā, kuñcikā
kungkuma saffron kuṅkuma
kurnia mercy kāruṇya: compassion
kusta leprosy kuṣṭha
labu gourd alābu
laksa ten thousand lakṣa: 100,000
laksamana admiral lakṣmaṇa: name of Rama's younger brother
lawang door, cinnamon lavaṅga: clove
lela graceful movement, elegant līlā: play
lena sleep soundly līna: lying
lencana seal, emblem, badge lāñchana
lingga lingga (symbol of Shiva), phallic liṅga
loba greedy lobha: greed
loka world, place, realm, abode loka
madu honey, co-wife madhu: honey
maha great, super, hyper, very mahā
mahadewa supreme god mahā+deva: supreme god
mahadewi supreme goddess mahā+devi: supreme goddess
maha esa all-mighty maheśa = mahā+īśa: supreme lord
mahaguru professor mahā+guru: great teacher
maharaja king mahā+rāja: great king
maharani queen mahārani
mahasiswa (male) college/university student mahā-śiṣya: great-student (masc.)
mahasiswi (female) college/university student mahā-śiṣyā: great-student (fem.)
mahkota crown mukuṭa
mala stain, dirt mala: dirt, filth, impurity
malapetaka calamity, disaster mahā + pātaka: great + sin or collapse
manakala when māna-kāla: in honor of time
mani sperm maṇi: pearls, gem, jewel
manik bead, sequin, jewel maṇi: pearl, gem, jewel
mantera mantra mantra
menteri minister (head of a government department) mantri
merajalela rage, raging, at large, rampant maharaja-līlā: king + play
merdeka freedom, liberty mahā-ṛdhika: great prosperity
mitra partner mitra: friend
muka face mukha
mula to start, to begin mūla: origin
naga dragon nāga: serpent deities
nama name nāma
negara country nagara: city
negeri city (lit.) nagarī: city (fem.)
neraka hell naraka
nirwana an ideal condition of harmony or joy nirvana
nusa island (poetic) nūsa
pahala merit, reward (for moral conduct) phala (of fruits, of results)
paksa to force pakṣa: side, faction, partisan, adherent
pekerti character, nature prakṛti: origin, character, nature, pattern
pendeta priest paṇḍita: learned, scholar, skilled
pendopo hall maṇḍapa, through Javanese: pendhapa
perkasa powerful, forceful, manly prakāśa: shining, manifest, renowned
perkosa rape prakāśa (same origin as perkasa)
pertama first prathama
perwira high-ranked military official pravīra: brave or eminent man, hero, chief
pria man/men priya: beloved, dear
puasa fasting upavāsa: fasting, abstinence
puja worship, adore pūjā
punya have, possessive verb puṇya: merit, virtue
pura Hindu temple, city pura: city/walled enclosure
purba ancient pūrva
puri palace pura: city/walled enclosure
pustaka book pustaka
puspa flower (poetic) puṣpa
putera, putra son putra: prince
puteri, putri daughter, princess putrī: princess
raga body rāga: color, feeling, beauty
rahasia secret rahasya
raja king rāja
raksasa giant, monster rākṣasa: beast-like demon
rani queen rāṇī, rājñī
rasa emotion, feeling, taste rasa
ratna jewel, gemstone (poetic) ratna
resmi official raśmi: string, leash, ray of light
rupa look, appearance rūpa: form, likeness
sabda proclamation (poetic) śabda: voice, speech
sakti powerful śakti: power, energy
samudra ocean samudra
sasana training hall śāsana: teaching
sastra literature śāstra: scripture, teaching
satwa fauna, animals sattva: sentint being, "that which is"
semadi, samedi meditation, contemplation samādhi
semesta whole, total samasta: united, whole, all
sempurna perfect sampūrṇa: entirely, complete
sengsara suffering saṁsāra: continuous flow of reincarnation
senopati general, military leader (archaic) senāpati
seteru enemy śatru
setia loyal, truthful satya: truth, correct; satī: faithful wife
serba all, everything, complete sarva: all or everything
singa lion siṁha
singgasana throne siṁhāsana: the lion throne
suami husband svāmī
suara sound svara
suka like, happy sukha
sukma soul sūkṣma: subtle, atomic
sunyi quiet (situation) śūnya: zero, nothing
surga heaven svarga
surya sun (poetic), solar sūrya: Hindu sun god
susila modesty, appropriate suśīla
swa- do something by oneself sva-: self, own
tali rope, string talli
tata order, to arrange tathā: thus, in that manner
topi hat topi
unta camel uṣṭra
upacara ceremony upacāra: ceremony, religious ritual
usaha effort utsaha
usia age āyuṣa: life-span
utama ultimate, the most important, foremost uttama
utara north uttara
wahana ride, vehicle vahana
wana forest (poetic) vana
wangsa dynasty, royal house vaṁśa: lineage
wanita woman, lady vanitā: wife, woman
warna colour varṇa
warta news varta (same origin as berita)
warta berita news broadcast varta
wihara Buddhist Temple vihāra
yudha war, battle (poetic) yuddha

From Tamil

Loanwords from Tamil, while also an Indian language (though not Indo-European as in Sanskrit), mainly exist in cuisine, like Chinese and unlike Sanskrit. It mainly entered the lexicon of Malay (and by extension, Indonesian) with the immigration of South Indian traders who settled around the Strait of Malacca.

This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.
Word Meaning Original word
apam kind of cake apam
gulai kind of curry gulai
kapal boat kappal
kata say katai
kedai foodstall Kaddai
kuil temple koil
mangga mango manga
roti bread rotti
topi hat toppi

From Middle Eastern languages

From Arabic

The loanwords from Arabic are mainly concerned with religion, in particular with Islam. Allah is the word for God even in Christian Bible translations. Many early Bible translators, when they came across some unusual Hebrew words or proper names, used the Arabic cognates. In the newer translations this practice is discontinued. They now turn to Greek names or use the original Hebrew Word. For example, the name Jesus was initially translated as 'Isa, but is now spelt as Yesus. Psalms used to be translated as Zabur, the Arabic name, but now it is called Mazmur which corresponds more with Hebrew.

Word Meaning Original word Transcription, notes
abdi servant عَبْدʻabd
adab civilize, proper أَدَبadab
adat custom عادة ʻāda
ahad Sunday (Islamic) الأحد al-ahad
ajaib magical عجائب ʻajāʼīb
akad contract, promise عَقْد ʻaqd
akal reason عَقْلʻaql
akhir endآخِرʼākhir
akhirat hereafter آخِرة ākhira
akhlak character, nature (of person)أَخْلاقakhlāq
alam natureعالَمʻālam: world, earth
alami natural عالَميّ ʻālamiyy
aljabar algebra الجَبْرal-jabr
amal alms giving, good deed عَمَلʻamal: work
aman safe, secure أمان ʼamān
anda you (formal) أَنْتَ anta
asal origin أَصْلʼaṣl
asas foundation, basis أَساس ʼasās
asasi foundational, basic أَساسيّ ʼasāsiyy
asli real, originalأَصْليّʼaṣliyy
awal beginning أَوَّلʼawwal
badan body بَدَنbadan
bahari maritime, naval, of the seaبَحْريّbaḥriyy
batin inner self بَطْن baṭn: stomach
berkah, berkatblessingبَرَكة baraka
daftar list دَفْتَرdaftar: notebook
dakwah sermon دَعْوةda'wa
dunia world دُنْياdunyā
fakir poor person, pauperفَقيرfaqīr
hadiah gift, presentهديةhadiyyah
halal religiously lawful حَلال ḥalāl
hak right حَقّ ḥaqq
hakikattruth, baseحَقيقةḥaqīqa
hakiki true, real حَقيقيّ ḥaqīqiyy
hakim judge (in court of law) حاكِم ḥākim
haram religiously unlawful حَرامḥarām
hayati living حَياتيّ ḥayātiyy
hewan animal حَيَوان ḥayawān
hikmah wisdom, deeper meaningحِكْمةḥikma
hukum law حُكْم ḥukm
huruf letter (of an alphabet) حُروفḥurūf
ijazah diploma إجازةʼijāza: license
ikrar pledge, declarationإقْرارʼiqrār
ilmiah scientific عِلْميّʻilmiyy
ilmu knowledge, science عِلْمʻilm
istirahat rest, break, pause, recess اسْتَراحة istarāḥa
izin permission, to permit إذْنʼidhn
Ikhlas sincere مخلَص Ikhlās
jadwal schedule جَدْوَل jadwal
jahanam cursed, damned جَهَنَّمjahannam: hell
jahil prank, practical joke جاهِلjāhil: ignorant, uninformed
jawab answer جَوابjawāb
jenazah corpse جَنازةjanāza: funeral
jilbab hijab, head coveringجلبابjilbāb: loose coat
Jumat Friday الجُمْعة al-jumʻa
kabar news خَبَر khabar
kafan white shroud (to cover the dead) كَفَن kafan
kafir infidel كافِرkāfir
Kamis Thursday الخَميس al-khamīs
kamus dictionary قاموس qāmūs
kertas paper قِرْطاسqirṭās
khas specialty خاصّ khāṣṣ
khitan circumcision خِتان khitān
kitab religious book كِتابkitāb
korban sacrifice قُرْبانqurbān
kuliah college كُلّيّةkulliyya: faculty
kurma date palm كَرْمةkarma: grapevine
kursi chair كُرْسيّkursiyy
kurun span (of time) قُرونqurūn: centuries
laskar soldier العَسْكَرal-ʻaskar
lisan verbally, tongueلِسانlisān
maaf sorry, to apologise ما أَفَّma affa
mahkamah court of law مَحْكَمة maḥkama
majelis assembly, board, councilمَجْلِسmajlis
makna meaning مَعْنًىmaʻnan
maksud meaning, purpose مَقْصودmaqsūd
maktub written مَكْتوب maktūb
malaikat angel مَلائكةmalāʼika
masalah problemمَسْأَلةmasʼala
masjid mosque مَسْجِد masjid
maut dead, deadly مَوْتmawt
menara tower مَنارة manāra
Mesir Egypt مِصْر miṣr
miskin poor مِسْكينmiskīn
mubazir useless مُبَذِّرmubaḏḏir
muflis bankrupt مُفْلِس muflis
mungkin maybe مُمْكِنmumkin
munafik hypocrite مُنافِقmunāfiq
murtad apostate مُرْتَدّmurtadd
musim season مَوْسِمmawsim
mustahil impossibleمُسْتَحيلmustaḥīl
nabi prophet نَبيّ nabiiy
nafsu desire نَفْسnafs: self, soul
najis impure, uncleanنَجِس najis
nasihat advice نَصيحة naṣīḥa
nikah to marryنيكَniika
paham to understand فَهْم fahm
petuah lesson, advice فَتْوىfatwā
pikir to think فِكْر fikr
Rabu Wednesday الأَرْبِعاء al-ʼarbiʻāʼ
rahim uterus, womb رَحِم raḥim
rahmat blessing رَحْمةraḥma
rakyat people, citizen رَعيّةraʻiyya
rasul prophet, apostle رَسول rasūl
rehat, rihat rest راحة rāḥa
saat moment ساعةsāʻa: hour
sabar patientصَبْرṣabr
Sabtu Saturday السَبْتas-sabt
sabun soap صابون ṣābūn
sahabat close friend صَحابةṣaḥāba
salat to pray (for Muslims) صَلاة ṣalāh
saleh pious صالِحṣāliḥ
salju snow ثَلْج thalj
saum fasting صَوْم ṣawm
sebab cause, reason سَبَب sabab
sedekah charitable gift, alms صَدَقة ṣadaqa
sehat healthyصِحّةṣiḥḥa
selamat safe, well-being سَلامة salāma
Selasa Tuesday الثُلاثاء ath-thulāthāʼ
Senin Monday الإثْنَيْنal-ithnayn
serikat company, federation شَرِكَة syarika
siasat strategy, trickسِياسةsiyāsa: policy, strategy
sifat characteristic, trait, quality صِفة ṣifa
soal question, problem سُؤال suʼāl
surat letter سورةsūra
subuh early morning صباح ṣabāḥ
sultan king سلطانsultan
syariat Islamic law شَريعةsharīʻa
tabib traditional healer طَبيبṭabīb
terjemah to translateتَرْجَمةtarjama
tertib orderly تَرْتيبtartīb
umum common, public عُموم ʻumūm
umur age عُمْرʻumr
unsur element عُنْصُر ʻunṣur
wahid one, the onlyواحِدwāḥid
wajah face وَجْه wajh
waktu time وَقْتwaqt
waris to inheritوارِثwārith
wilayah region, area وِلايةwilāya
yakin confidence, sureness, beliefيَقينyaqīn
Yunani Greece يونانyūnān
zaitun olive زَيْتونzaytūn
zakar male genitaliaذَكَرdhakar
zakat alms زَكاةzakāh
zaman era زَمَن zaman
zamrud emerald زُمُرُّد zumurrud
ziarah pilgrimage زيارة ziyāra: visit
zinah adultery زِناءzināʼ

From Persian

Word Meaning Original word Transcription, notes
anggur grape انگور an-gur
bandar port بندر bandar
cadar veil چادر chādar
dewan assembly, meeting دیوان divan (administration)
firdaus eden, bountiful garden فردوس firdaus
gandum wheat گندم gandum
juang battle جنگ jang
kaisar emperor قیصر qeysar
kismis raisin کشمش kishmish
kurma date خرما khurmā
medan area, field, square میدان meidan
nakhoda captain of a ship ناخدا nākhodā
pahlawan hero پ‍ﮩ‍لوان pahlwān
pasar market/bazaar بازار bāzār
pesona charm افسون afsūn
piala cup, trophy پیاله pyāla (cup, bowl)
pirus turquoise سنگ فیروزه firuze
rubah fox روباه rubah
sihir magic سِحْر sihr
syahbandar portmaster شاهِ بندر shah-e bandar (lit. "king of the port")
takhta throne تخت takht
ustad teacher (religious, Islam) اُستَاذ ustad
zirah armor زره zirah

From East Asian languages

From Chinese

The Chinese loanwords are usually concerned with cuisine, trade or often just exclusively things Chinese. According to the 2000 census, the relative number of people of Chinese descent in Indonesia (termed the peranakan) is almost 1% (totaling to about 3 million people, although this may likely be an underestimate due to an anti-Chinese sentiment that exists in some circles of the population), yet the peranakan are the most successful when it comes to business, trade, and cuisine. Words of Chinese origin (presented here with accompanying Hokkien/ Mandarin pronunciation derivatives as well as traditional and simplified characters) include pisau (匕首 bǐshǒu – knife), mie (T:麵, S:面, Hokkien mī – noodles), lumpia (潤餅 (Hokkien = lūn-piáⁿ) – springroll), teko (T:茶壺, S:茶壶 = cháhú [Mandarin], teh-ko [Hokkien] = teapot), 苦力 kuli = 苦 khu (bitter) and 力 li (energy) and even the widely used slang terms gua and lu (from the Hokkien 'goa' 我 and 'lu/li' 你 – meaning 'I/ me' and 'you'). Almost all loan words in Indonesian with Chinese origin comes from Hokkien (福建) dialect and Hakka (客家). Loan words in Indonesian with Chinese origins.

Word Meaning Original Character Original Word Original Word Meaning
amah Chinese female house-assistant 阿嫲 aa3maa4 (Cantonese) paternal grandmother
amoi Chinese girl 阿妹 amoi (Hakka) younger sister
angciu cooking wine used for food flavour enhancer 紅酒 ang ciu red wine
anglo small stove T:洪爐, S:洪炉 anglô͘ (Hokkien) furnance
angpao gift money for Chinese New Year T:紅包, S:红包 âng-pau (Hokkien) Red envelope
baba addressing Chinese male 爸爸 ba̍ba (Hokkien) Father
bak (Chinese black) ink ba̍k (Hokkien) 1. Chinese ink or ink in general
2. black; ink-coloured; dark
bakcang glutinous rice dumpling filled with meat 肉粽 bak cang
bakiak Wooden Clog 木屐 ba̍k-kia̍h (Hokkien) Clog
bakmie meat noodle 肉麵 bak mie
bakpau meatbun 肉包 bak pao
bakso meatball (肉球?) bak so
bihun rice vermicelli 米粉 bí-hún (Hokkien) 1. rice vermicelli
2. rice flour
cap cai stir fried vegetable dish 杂菜 cha̍p-chhài
cawan cup 茶碗 cháwǎn (Mandarin) teacup
cukong tycoon 主公 chú-kong (Hokkien) Your Excellency; His Excellency
dacin balance scale (抬輕?) dacin
gua me (slang) góa (Hokkien) I, me
hoki luck, fortune T:福氣, S:福气 hok-khì (Hokkien) good fortune
kakak older sibling
addressing someone slightly older
哥哥 ko—ko (Hokkien) older brother, elder brother, big brother
kecap soy sauce (ketchup is 'saus tomat', not kecap) 茄汁 ke4-2 zap1 (Cantonese) 1. tomato juice
2. ketchup
kerangkeng cage T:-間, S:-间 -keng (Hokkien) room
kue cake, pastries 粿 kóe (Hokkien) rice cake
kuli slave, labourer 苦力 ku-lí (Hokkien) 1. labor; hard work
2.a coolie; a laborer
kwetiau kway teow (flat noodle) T:粿條, S:粿条 kóe-tiâu (Hokkien) kway teow
lihai skillful 厲害 li hai
lobak daikon, radish 蘿蔔 lo ba
loténg 2nd storey of a house, attic 樓頂 lao teng
lu you (slang) lu/li
lumpia spring roll 潤餅 lun pia
mak comblang matchmaker 媒紅娘(?)
mesiu gunpowder
mi / mie noodle T:麵, S:面 mī (Hokkien)
mien (Hakka)
flour, dough, noodle
MSG (flavouring for cooking) 味精 mei6 zing1 (Cantonese)
vetsin (Mandarin)
nyonya madame, lady 娘惹 noeng3 ja1 (Cantonese) beloved perfect woman
pisau knife 匕首 bei6 sau2 (Cantonese)
pí-siú (Hokkien)
sempoa abacus, suanpan T:算盤, S:算盘 sǹg-pôaⁿ (Hokkien) abacus
singkék Chinese newcomer (derogative), pure blooded Chinese, i.e. not of mixed ancestry 新客 sinkhek
siomay shumai (wrapped and steamed with fillings) T:燒賣, S:烧卖 siau-māi
tahu tofu 豆腐 tāu-hū (Hokkien) tofu, bean curd
teh tea tê (Hokkien) tea
teko tea pot T:茶壺, S:茶壶 tê ô͘ (Hokkien) teapot
Tionghoa Chinese T:中華, S:中华 tiong-hôa (Hokkien)
zhōnghuá (Mandarin)
Tiongkok China T:中國, S:中国 tiong-kok (Hokkien)
zhōngguó (Mandarin)

From Japanese

Japanese loan words are usually related to culture of Japan or Japanese colonial administration.

Word Meaning Original Word Original Meaning
banzai Japanese long life cheers 万歳 banzai long life cheers
bonsai miniature potted plant 盆栽 bonsai miniature potted plant
dakocan air-filled black plastic dolls ダッコちゃん Dakko-chan air-filled black plastic dolls
dan rank for judo, karate, and kenpo 段 dan rank in Japanese, Chinese and Korean martial arts and Go
ebi dried shrimp えび ebi prawn;  shrimp;  lobster;  crayfish
gunseikan Japanese military government 軍政官 gunseikan military government
harakiri ritual suicide; (self-)disembowelment in Japan 腹切 harakiri ritual suicide; (self-)disembowelment
haiku haiku 俳句 haiku haiku
heiho Japanese colonial era assistance force 兵補 heiho supplementary army
(ber-)jibaku 1. suicide bomber
2. reckless, desperate attack
自爆 jibaku suicide bombing, self-destruction
ikebana flower arranging art 生花 ikebana flower arrangement
ipon crushing victory 一本 ippon 1. one (...)
2. one version
3. one book;
4.  a certain book
5.  one point;
6.  a blow
7. experienced
8. single-minded focus
kamikaze divine wind
suicide attacks by military aviators from Japan in World War 2
神風 kamikaze divine wind
suicide attacks by military aviators from Japan in World War 2
karaoke karaoke 空オケ karaoke karaoke
keibodan Japanese colonial police asistant 警防団 keibōdan civil defense unit
kempetai Japanese military police 憲兵隊 kenpeitai military police corps
kimono 1. Japanese traditional dress
2. Bathrobe
着物 kimono 1. cloth
2. kimono
kumico people association leader 組長 kumichō people association leader
taiso Japanese gymnastics 体操 taisho gymnastics;  physical exercises;  calisthenics
tatami Sport play area 畳 tatami Japanese straw floor coverings
takeyori bamboo spear 竹槍 takeyori bamboo spear
tekidanto grenade launcher 擲弾筒 tekidantō grenade launcher
tsunami tsunami 津波 tsunami tsunami
tidal wave
yuyitsu jujitsu 柔術 jujitsu jujitsu

From European languages

European influence over Indonesian language is significantly influenced through European intervention and colonialism, the most significant evident is the usage of Latin alphabet instead of various local scripts. Portuguese had first arrived in the archipelago and influenced the original Malay language after their conquest of Malacca. The Portuguese dominance over trade in the region and control of the spice island of Moluccas had significantly increase Portuguese influence in trade and also through the introduction of Christianity over the region. The Dutch however shows the most influence in the language, being in control of Indonesia for 300 years after eliminating the Portuguese as a player over control of the archipelago. Dutch language itself wasn't properly introduced over the archipelago before 1799 when the Netherlands' crown took over the colony from the already bankrupt VOC (Dutch East India company), previously the Malay language was adapted by VOC due to its trade and diplomatic benefit which led to mass loanword over the language. English to an extend also have influence over the archipelago's language, being the third most favored foreign language by the educated in the colonial days. English however plays more role over the nation's official language through recent globalization.

From Portuguese

Alongside Malay, Portuguese was the lingua franca for trade throughout the archipelago from the sixteenth century through to the early nineteenth century. The Portuguese were among the first westerners to sail east to the "Spice Islands". Loanwords from Portuguese were mainly connected with articles the early European traders and explorers brought to Southeast Asia.[3]

Word Meaning Original word
akta act (law) acta
algojo executioner algoz
armada fleet armada
bangku chair banco: bench
baret barrette barrete
Belanda Dutch, Holland Holanda
bendéra flag bandeira
beranda verandah, porch varanda
biola violin viola
bola ball bola
(kué) bolu (a type of) cake bolo
bonéka doll boneca
cerutu cigar charuto
dansa dance (not including traditional dance) dança
dadu dice dado
gagu mute gago: stutterer, stuttering
ganco hook gancho
garpu fork garfo
geréja church igreja
gratis free (not having to pay) gratis (Dutch: gratis)
jendéla window janela
kaldu broth caldo
kanal channel canal (Dutch: kanaal)
kéju cheese queijo
keméja shirt camisa
keréta chariot/cart carreta
kertas paper cartas (papel)
kredo creed credo
lelang auction leilão
lemari closet armário
meja table mesa
mentéga butter manteiga
Minggu Sunday domingo
misa mass missa
mitos myth mitos
nanas pineapple ananas
natal Christmas natal
noda stain nodoa
nona young woman dona
nyonya lady donha
pasta paste pasta
pesiar cruise, excursion passear
pesta party festa
pigura picture, figure figura
pita ribbon fita
pompa pump bomba hidráulica, (Dutch: pomp)
roda wheel roda
saku pocket, bag saco
santo saint santo
sekolah school escola (Latin: schola)
sepatu shoe sapato
serdadu soldier soldado
témpo time tempo
tenda tent tenda
terigu wheat trigo
tinta ink tinta
tolol fool tolo
tukar exchange trocar

From Dutch

The former colonial power, the Netherlands, left an extensive vocabulary. These Dutch loanwords, and also from other non Italo-Iberian, European languages loanwords which came via Dutch, cover all aspects of life. Some Dutch loanwords, having clusters of several consonants, pose difficulties to speakers of Indonesian. This problem is usually solved by insertion of the schwa. For example, Dutch schroef [ˈsxruf]sekrup [səˈkrup]. Many Indonesian vocabulary ending "-i" (e.g.:administras-i) also are known from the Dutch vocabulary influence "-ie" (e.g.:administrat-i.e.). All the months from January (Januari) to December (December) used in Indonesian are also derived from Dutch. It is estimated that 10,000 words in Indonesian language can be traced to the Dutch language.[4]

Word Meaning Original word
abolisi abolition abolitie
administrasi administration administratie
advokat lawyer advocaat
afdeling division, section afdeling
Agustus August augustus
aktual current (adj) actueel
aliansi alliance alliantie
amnesti amnesty, state-granted pardon amnestie
antik antique antiek
apartemen apartment appartement
apotek/apotik pharmacy apotheek
April April April
arde ground (electricity) aarde
arbéi strawberry aardbei
artikel article artikel
arloji watch horloge
asbak ashtray asbak
atret aback achteruit
ban tire band
barikade barricade barricades
baskom/waskom washbasin waskom
baterai battery batterij
baut & mur bolt & nut bout & moer
begel bracket beugel
beha brassiere beha
beken famous, notorious bekend
bekleding chair lining bekleding
béngkél workplace winkel: store, originally angle
besuk visiting bezoeken
bioskop cinema bioscoop
bis bus bus [bʏs]
bon receipt bon
brankas safe deposit box brandkast
branwir firefighter squad brandweer
bruder Roman Catholic friar broeder: brother
buku book boek
buncis green beans boontjes
cokelat chocolate chocolade
dah/dadah good-bye dag: (good) day
dak roof dak
dasi necktie das(je)
debat debate debat
December December December
departemen department departement
diskusi discussion discussie
dokter medical doctor dokter
dosis dose dosis
duit money duit: a copper Dutch coin
egois selfish egoïst: egoist
émbér bucket emmer
éngsél hinges hengsel
Eropa Europe Europa
faktur invoice factuur
fantastis fantastic fantastisch
Februari February februari
frambus raspberry framboos
gaji wages gage
gang alley gang
gardu to guard, watch post garde
gerilya guerrilla guerrilla
gorden curtain gordijn
gubernur governor gouverneur
halo hello hallo
handuk towel handdoek
hanger hanger hanger
halte bus bus stop bushalte
helm helmet helm
hipotek mortgage hypotheek
ide idea idee
identik identical identiek
ilusi ilussion ilusie
imun immune immuun
indehoy forbidden sexual intercourse inhethooi:[5] in the hay
Indo Eurasian, mestizo abbreviation of Indo-European
infanteri infantry infanterie
insinyur engineer ingenieur
institut institute instituut
intim intimate intiem
Januari January januari
jas coat jas
Juni June juni
jus juice jus
Juli July juli
kabel cable kabel
kaisar emperor keizer
kakus toilet verb: kakken/noun: kakhuis
kalem calm kalm
kalkun turkey kalkoen
kamar room kamer
kantor office kantoor
karakter character karakter
karcis ticket kaartjes: plural for diminutive of kaart, card or ticket)
kartu card kaart
kastanye chestnut kastanje
katun cotton katoen
kavaleri cavalry cavalerie
kelar ready, finished klaar
kelas class klas
keran faucet, tap kraan
knalpot (or kenalpot) muffler (on a motor vehicle) knalpot
kol cabbages kool
kolega colleague collega
komandan commander commandant
komentar comment commentaar
komersil commercial commercieel
komisaris commissioner commissaris
kondisi condition conditie
kongres congress congres
kopi coffee koffie
kopling clutch koppeling
kopor suitcase koffer
kor/koor choir koor
korsleting/konslet short circuit kortsluiting
korting/diskon discount korting/disconteren
korup corrupt corrupt
korupsi corruption corruptie
kos/indekos room rental kost:[5] cost; board
kuitansi receipt kwitantie
kulkas ice box or refrigerator koelkast
kursus course cursus
kusén window frame kozijn
laci deskdrawer laatje: diminutive form of la(de)
lampu lamp lamp
limun lemonade limoen: lemon
lisensi license licentie
listrik electric elektrisch
loket pay box loket
makelar broker makelaar
mantel coat mantel
Maret March maart
maskapai airline maatschappij: company
massa mass (bulk, load) massa
matras bed matras
mebel furniture meubel
media massa mass media massamedia
Mei May mei
meises sprinkles muisjes
merek brand merk
migrasi migration migratie
minder not confident minder: minder
misi mission missie
mobil car, automobile automobiel
montir mechanic monteur
motor motorcycle motorfiets
nanas pineapple ananas (Portuguese: Ananas, origin South America)
nomer number nummer
nol zero/nil nul
November November November
Oktober October oktober
om uncle oom
oma grandma oma
omzet/omset revenue omzet
onderdil components/spare parts onderdeel
ongkos cost & expenses onkosten
opa granddad opa
oranye orange (colour) oranje
orgel pipe organ orgel
otomatis automatic automatisch
pabrik factory fabriek
parkir parking parkeer
parlemen parliament parlement
paroki parish parochie
pas fit past (third person singular of "passen")
pastor pastor pastoor
paviliun pavilion paviljoen
pelopor frontrunner voorloper
pénsil pencil penseel (brush)
pensiun retirement pensioen
perboden prohibit (mainly used in street signs in Indonesian) verboden
permak alter, transform vermaken
permisi excuse me; permission permissie: permission
peron platform (railway) perron
pers press pers
persik peach perzik
persis precise, exactly the same, look alike precies
persneling gear versnelling
plafon ceiling plafond, from French
polisi police politie
potlot pencil potlood
potret portrait portret
preman gangster vrijman: freeman; outlaw
prestasi performance prestatie
prinsip principle principe
proyek project project
redaksi editorial office redactie
rékening account rekening
reklame advertisement reclame
rem brake rem
resep recipe recept
résléting zipper ritssluiting
resiko risk risico
rok skirt rok
rokok cigarette; smoke roken: to smoke
sakelar switch schakelaar
saldo balance saldo
satelit satellite satelliet
saus sauce saus
segel seal zegel
sekop shovel schop
sekrup screw schroef
seks sex seks
seksi section sektie
selang water hose slang
sempak swim briefs zwempak
senewen jumpy zenuwachtig
September September September
sepur train spoor
serius serious serieus
sertifikat certificate certificaat
setrika clothes iron strijkijzer
setrum current (electricity) stroom
sinterklas Santa Claus sinterklaas
sipir warden cipier
sirkulasi circulation circulatie
solusi solution solutie
spanduk commercial or information banner spandoeken
standar standard standaard
stasiun train station station
stopkontak power socket stopcontact
struktur structure structuur
suster nun, nurse, sister zuster
tang pliers tang
tas bag tas
tégel floor tile tegel
teh tea thee
teknologi technology technologie
telat late te laat (too late)
telefon telephone telefoon
televisi television televisie
tema theme thema
terompet trumpet trompet
teori theory theorie
tinta ink tint
tomat tomato tomaat (Portuguese: tomate, origin Central America)
topik topic topic
toren tower (usually for water tower in Indonesian) toren
traktir treat trakteer
tustel camera tools toestel: device, appliances
variabel variable variabel
vas vase vaas
versi version versie
visi vision visie
voorijder outrider voorrijder
vulkan volcano vulkaan
wastafel sink wastafel
wol wool wol
wortel carrot wortel
yuridis juridical juridisch
yustisi judiciary justitie

From Greek

Word Meaning Original word
demokrasi democracy demokratia through Dutch: democratie
filsafat philosophy philasophia, through Arabic: falsafah
mitos myth mythos, through Portuguese: mitos
stadion stadium stadion through Dutch: stadion

From Latin

It is notable that some of the loanwords that exist in both Indonesian and Malaysian languages are different in spelling and pronunciation mainly due to how they derived their origins: Malaysian utilizes words that reflect the English usage (as used by its former colonial power, the British), while Indonesian uses a Latinate form reflected in the Dutch usage (e.g. aktiviti (Malaysian) vs. aktivitas (Indonesian), universiti (Malaysian) vs. universitas (Indonesian)).

Word Meaning Original word
ad interim temporarily ad interim
aktifitas activity activitas
almamater revered name for one's university alma mater: wise and nurturing mother
fakultas faculty facultas
forum forum forum, through Portuguese: forum
humaniora humanities humaniora
kantata song cantata, through Portuguese: cantada
kualitas quality qualitas
nihil nil, nothing, zero nihil
nota bene actually, after look carefully, also nota bene: examine closely
oknum authority figure (police, soldier, prosecutor, judge) that perform unlawful or corrupted deed ocnum: name personal
status status status
universitas university universitas

From French

Word Meaning Original word
akur agree, get along well accord, through Dutch: akkoord
arsip archives archives, through Dutch: archief
bulat round boulette: ball
domisili place of staying domicile: house
garnisun garrison garnison, through Dutch: garnisoen
intrik intrigue intrigue, through Dutch: intrige
kado gift cadeau, through Dutch: kado/cadeau
kampanye campaign campagne, through Dutch: campagne
karantina quarantine quarantine, through Dutch: quarantine
karoseri the body of vehicle, car, coach, or bus carrosserie, through Dutch: carrosserie
klise cliche cliché, through Dutch: cliché
kudeta coup coup d'état
legiun legion légion, through Dutch: legioen
letnan lieutenant lieutenant, through Dutch: lieutenant
libur free (not occupied) libre
manuver maneuver manœuvre, through Dutch: manoeuvre
mayones mayonnaise mayonnaise
sabotase sabotage sabotage, through Dutch: sabotage
sepeda bicycle vélocipède
supir driver chauffeur, through Dutch: chauffeur
tante aunt tante, through Dutch: tante
trotoar sidewalk trottoir, through Dutch: troittoir (also stoep, pronounced as "stoop")

From English

Many English words are adopted in Indonesian through globalization, due to this however many Indonesians mistake words that were originally adopted from Dutch with English due to the Germanic traces that exist in the two languages (both are Indo-European Germanic languages from the same branch, the West Germanic).

Word Meaning Original word
astronot astronaut astronaut
bisnis business business
diskon discount discount
elektronik electronic electronic
gosip gossip gossip
isu issue issue
katering catering service catering
komputer computer computer (Dutch: Computer)
komplit complete complete (Dutch: Compleet)
kondom condom condom
konter counter counter (Germans: konter)
modem modem modem
moderen modern modern (Dutch: moderne)
partner partner partner
pilot pilot pilot (Dutch: Piloot)
ponsel / HP read:Ha-Pé (shortened word from Hand Phone) cell phone hand phone (used in Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, and South Korea)
radar radar radar
roket rocket rocket
sistem system system (Dutch: Systeem)
stroberi strawberry strawberry
target target target

See also


  1. 1 2 C. D. Grijns et al. (eds). "Loan-words in Indonesian and Malay" (PDF). KITLV. Retrieved 26 August 2012.
  2. Nurlela Adan, Ermitati, Rosnida M. Nur (2001). Kamus Bahasa Indonesia-Minangkabau. Jakarta: Balai Pustaka.
  3. Ricklefs, M.C. (1991). A History of Modern Indonesia Since c.1300, 2nd Edition. London: MacMillan. p. 26. ISBN 0-333-57689-6.


  • de Vries, Jan W., Grijns, C.D. and Santa Maria, L. 1983 Indonesian : a check-list of words of European origin in Bahasa Indonesia and traditional Malay Leiden : Koninklijk Instituut voor Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde. ISBN 90-6718-004-1.
  • Badudu, J.S; Kamus Kata-kata Serapan Asing Dalam Bahasa Indonesia; Kompas, Jakarta, 2003

External links

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