Hisamuddin of Selangor

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Hisamuddin Alam Shah
Yang di-Pertuan Agong
CO 1069-493-37 (7888168060).jpg
Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaya
Reign 14 April 1960 - 1 September 1960
Predecessor Abdul Rahman of Negeri Sembilan
Successor Putra of Perlis
Sultan of Selangor
Reign 4 April 1938 - 15 January 1942
Coronation 26 January 1939
Predecessor Sultan Alauddin Sulaiman Shah
Successor Sultan Musa Ghiatuddin Riayat Shah
Reign 14 September 1945 - 1 September 1960
Predecessor Sultan Musa Ghiatuddin Riayat Shah
Successor Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah
Born (1898-05-13)13 May 1898
Kuala Langat, Selangor, Federated Malay States, British Malaya
Died 1 September 1960(1960-09-01) (aged 62)
Istana Negera, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Burial 3 September 1960
Royal Mausoleum, Klang, Selangor, Malaysia
Spouse Raja Jemaah
Cik Puan Kalsom binti Mahmud
Tengku Abdul Aziz Shah
Tengku Badli Shah
Tengku Hajah Raudzah
Tengku Siti Kartina
Tengku Ampuan Bariah
Tengku Ismail Shah
Tengku Hajah Taksiah
Full name
Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah Ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Alauddin Sulaiman Shah
Mother Hasnah binti Pilong
Religion Sunni Islam

Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah Ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Alauddin Sulaiman Shah KCMG (13 May 1898 – 1 September 1960) was the second Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia from 14 April to 1 September 1960, and fifth and seventh Sultan of Selangor between 1938–1942 and again from 1945-1960.

Early career

He was the first son of Almarhum Sultan Alaeddin Sulaiman Shah ibni Almarhum Raja Muda Musa (1893–1938) by Cik Puan Hasnah binti Pilong, a commoner wife. Named Tengku Alam Shah at birth, he was not expected to succeed as he had two elder half-brothers.

Educated at the Malay College Kuala Kangsar, he was instrumental in the establishment of the Malay College Old Boys Association(MCOBA) in 1929. In 1931, he was appointed Tengku Laksamana of Selangor, having previously served as Tengku Panglima Raja.

The Selangor Succession Dispute

Sultan Alaeddin Sulaiman Shah had many children, his first three sons in chronological order being Tengku Musa Eddin, Tengku Badar Shah and Tengku Alam Shah. The first two sons were children by his royal consort, Tengku Ampuan Maharum binti Tengku Dhiauddin of the royal house of Kedah. In 1903, Tunku Musa Eddin had been made Tengku Mahkota and was promoted to Raja Muda or heir apparent in 1920.[1]

However, at the instigation of the British Resident, Theodore Samuel Adams (1885–1961; in office 1935 - 1937), Tengku Musa Eddin was dismissed as Raja Muda in 1934 for alleged "misbehaviour". Adams had accused Tengku Musa Eddin as a spendthrift and wastrel with a penchant for gambling. However, many Malays in Selangor believed the real reason for Tengku Musa Eddin's dismissal was his refusal to follow Adam's orders.[2]

Although Sultan Sulaiman pleaded for the case of Tengku Musa Eddin (even petitioning the Secretary of State for the Colonies and discussing the issue directly with him in London), Tengku Alam Shah was instead proclaimed Raja Muda or heir to the throne over the head of his other half-brother Tengku Badar.[3] The appointment occurred on 20 July 1936.[4]

First Reign

Tengku Alam Shah was proclaimed Sultan on 4 April 1938, four days after the death of his father. On 26 January 1939, he was crowned at Istana Mahkota Puri in Klang. Tengku Musa Eddin, then Tengku Kelana Jaya Putera, presided over the ceremony.[5]

Japanese Occupation

On 15 January 1942, Col. Fujiyama, the Japanese Military Governor of Selangor, invited Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah to King's House in Kuala Lumpur. In an interview with Major-General Minaki the Sultan confessed that he had made speeches in support of the British war efforts but had been persuaded by the British resident to do so. After being told to surrender the regalia to his older brother, the Japanese removed Sultan Alam Shah and in November 1943, proclaimed Tengku Musa Eddin as the new Sultan Musa Ghiatuddin Riayat Shah of Selangor.[6]

Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah declined to work with the Japanese and from 1943, refused their allowance awarded to him and his children.[7]

Second Reign

The return of the British finally brought Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah back to the throne, while ex-Sultan Musa was exiled to the Cocos Keeling Islands.[8] Although he had signed the Malayan Union treaty, like all other Malay rulers, he later repudiated it and gave open support to Malay nationalist effort to overthrow the plan.[citation needed]

On 1 March 1946, Sultan Alam Shah officiated the First Malay Unity Congress at the Sultan Sulaiman Club in Kuala Lumpur which was instrumental in creating UMNO. The Congress was organised by the Selangor Malay Society (PMS) which had as its president the scholar Zainal Abidin Ahmad (Za'ba), a critic of British colonial rule.[citation needed]

Election as Deputy King

On 3 August 1957, by eight votes to one, Sultan Alam Shah was elected Deputy Yang di-Pertuan Agong of independent Malaya.[9]

Election as King

Sultan Alam Shah was elected second Yang di-Pertuan Agong or federal Paramount Ruler of independent Malaya (the present Malaysia before the accession of British North Borneo, Sarawak and Singapore in 1963) on the death of Tuanku Abdul Rahman. His term of office began on 14 April 1960. On 30 July 1960 he proclaimed the end of the Emergency in Malaya.[10]

Death and Funeral

Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah died from an unidentified illness at Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur on 1 September 1960, aged 62, the day fixed for his installation. He was interred at the Royal Mausoleum near Sultan Sulaiman Mosque in Klang, Selangor on 3 September 1960.[11]

Personal and Family Life

Sultan Hisamuddin Alam Shah was married at least twice:

  1. in 1920 to Raja Jemaah binti Raja Ahmad (1900–1973), a member of a junior branch of the Selangor royal family, who served as Tengku Ampuan of Selangor and Raja Permaisuri Agong
  2. in 1927 to Kalsom binti Mahmud (1913–1990), who was the mother to Tengku Ampuan Besar Bariah of Terengganu.

He was succeeded by his son by Raja Jemaah, Tengku Abdul Aziz Shah, as Sultan of Selangor, taking the title of Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah. Sultan Salahuddin later became the 11th Yang di-Pertuan Agong and also died while in office like his father.



  1. Kolej Islam Sultan Alam Shah (previously known as Kolej Islam Kelang), was named after him.
  2. Sekolah Alam Shah (now Sekolah Sultan Alam Shah), first in Cheras and then in Putrajaya, was named after him.
  3. The City of Shah Alam and Istana Alam Shah in Klang was also named in his honour.
  4. Jalan Sultan Hisamuddin (formerly Victory Avenue), Kuala Lumpur was named after him
  5. His reign was the shortest ever for any Yang di-Pertuan Agong, lasting only 139 days. His son's reign, from 21 September 1999 and 21 November 2001 was the second shortest at two years and sixty two days.
  6. He is the only Yang di-Pertuan Agong never to have been officially installed.
  7. He is the only Yang di-Pertuan Agong who never lived at Istana Negara, Kuala Lumpur.
  8. He was the last Yang di-Pertuan Agong to read the Friday sermon himself.


  1. Buyong Adil, 1971, Sejarah Selangor
  2. Buyong Adil, op cit
  3. Willan, HC (7 October 1945) Interview with the Malay Rulers CAB 101/69, CAB/HIST/B/4/7
  4. Buyong Adil, op cit
  5. Buyong Adil, op cit
  6. Willan, HC (7 October 1945) Interview with the Malay Rulers CAB 101/69, CAB/HIST/B/4/7
  7. ibid
  8. Buyong Adil, op cit
  9. (August 4, 1957) Sunday Times, Singapore
  10. Buyong Adil, op cit
  11. Buyong Adil, op cit
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Tuanku Abdul Rahman
(Yang di-Pertuan Besar
of Negeri Sembilan)
Yang di-Pertuan Agong
(Supreme King of Malaysia)
Succeeded by
Tuanku Syed Putra
(Raja of Perlis)
Preceded by
Sultan Sulaiman
Sultan of Selangor (first time) Succeeded by
Sultan Musa Ghiatuddin Riayat Shah
Preceded by
Sultan Musa Ghiatuddin Riayat Shah
Sultan of Selangor (second time) Succeeded by
Sultan Salahuddin