Fri, 22 Dec 2000

Correction of Demak story

Thank you for printing my story Demak: A Javanese town of Islamic saints on the Post, Dec. 19. However, I'm moved to write this letter after I read my edited story carefully as I found some corrections from your copy editor are not correct in terms of fact.

1. The seventh paragraph of the printed story run: "Founded by Babad Demak in 1477, the main feature of the mosque is the 31- meter-long by 31-meter-wide main room".

My sentence was: "The characteristic of the mosque, which according to Babad Demak was founded in 1477, is in its 31 by 31 meters main room".

Babad Demak is not the name of a person, it is a name of a book like Babad Tanah Jawi (The Chronicles of Java Land) or Serat Centhini. The edited above sentence implies that the mosque was founded by Babad Demak and this is not correct.

2. The eleventh paragraph of the printed story run: "This would have been the work of Sunan Kalijaga, who was known as soko guru tatal".

My sentence was: "This handiwork of Sunan Kalijaga is popularly known as soko guru tatal, which he made by metaphysical power".

The personal pronoun "who" also implies that Sunan Kalijaga was known as soko guru tatal. It is totally wrong. In fact, soko guru tatal is the name of one distinguished legendary pillar in Great Mosque Demak that was made of tatal by Sunan Kalijaga.

As far as I concerned, native English copy editors may master the grammar and writing style of English. However, supervision is still required as they may not master all subjects about Indonesia, including its history.