Ondel-Ondel Batik Motif: Salawaku Dagger and Nutmeg Representation


Motif Name


Founded by Tribe

does not characterize one of the tribes

Associated Event

No specific association with an event


This motif depicts the hope that the wearer will succeed in achieving a more prosperous life and be protected from bad luck and danger.

Common Origin State(s)

DKI Jakarta Province, Indonesia


The Ondel-Ondel Batik Motif is a unique representation amalgamating two significant elements from the Maluku region—the Salawaku dagger and nutmeg. This motif is deeply rooted in the cultural identity of the Maluku people, showcasing their traditions, dances, rituals, and even local commodities.


Key Symbolism of Ondel-Ondel Batik Motif

Salawaku Dagger

The Salawaku dagger is a traditional weapon symbolizing the identity of the Maluku people. It is deeply ingrained in local culture, being a prominent feature in traditional dances, rituals, and textile patterns. The motif represents strength, valor, and cultural heritage.


Identity and Tradition

The inclusion of the Salawaku dagger signifies the importance of cultural identity and tradition in the lives of the Maluku people. It's a reminder of the rich history and values that define their community.


Nutmeg Representation

The reference to nutmeg, a main commodity of Maluku, adds an economic aspect to the motif. Nutmeg represents trade, economic prosperity, and the historical significance of Maluku as a prominent trading hub for spices.


Cultural Integration

The motif highlights the integration of cultural and economic elements, showcasing the interconnection of traditional values and economic activities in the lives of the Maluku people.


Cultural Significance and Artistic Expression

The Ondel-Ondel Batik Motif is an artistic expression that captures the essence of Maluku's identity. It preserves and promotes the cultural significance of the Salawaku dagger and the economic importance of nutmeg through the art of batik.


Usage and Application

This unique motif can be utilized in various applications, including clothing, accessories, and art pieces. It serves as a representation of cultural heritage and a reminder of the region's historical and economic prominence.


Preservation and Promotion

Preserving and promoting the Ondel-Ondel Batik Motif involves educating the public about its symbolism through exhibitions, cultural events, and educational initiatives. Collaborations with local artisans and designers can further popularize and modernize the motif, ensuring its continuity.



The Ondel-Ondel Batik Motif encapsulates the cultural identity and economic significance of the Maluku region, intertwining the symbolism of the Salawaku dagger and nutmeg. It stands as a representation of the Maluku people's history, values, and economic prosperity, serving as a unique and meaningful motif in the world of batik.

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