Once upon a time, there reigned in East Java a king named Sindureja. He had a prime minister named Sidapaksa. Sidapaksa had a very beautiful wife.
Sidapaksa loved his wife deeply. They lived in a complete happiness. However, Sidapksa’s mother didn’t like her daughter-in-law. Each day she tried to think a way to separate Sidapaksa from his wife.
One day, King Sindureja asked Sidapaksa to search for the bud of a magic flower on Mount Ijen. It was a long and dangerous journey. The assigment from the king was so important and urgent. Sidapaksa had to leave his pregnant wife.
Not long afterwards, a son was born. The baby’s birth gave too much happiness for the young mother.
However, one day, while this yong mother was bathing, her evil mother-in-law threw the baby into the river. Knowing that her baby disappeared, the young mother was very sad. She could neither eat or sleep. She became very ill.
Two years passed and Sidapksa returned from his journey. He succeeded in doing his duty. Just as he was about to enter his house, her mother told him that his wife had thrown their baby into the river.
Sidapaksa believed his mother’s story. He was too angry to use his common sense. He drew his kris and approached his wife who was lying weak on her bed.
“Ah, wicked woman. Tell me why you threw our new-born child into the river, Tell me!” he said in a rough and angry voice.
“Oh, my dearest husband. I am innocent. I love you, and our baby. I didn’t kill our child. If you don’t believe me, carry me to the river. I will prove that I didn’t do it,” replied his wife calmly.
Sidapaksa took her wife to the edge of the river. Suddenly, his wife leaped up and threw herself into the river.
“Oh my God! How will I know who killed my child?” moaned Sidapaksa.
Then he looked down at the water. Suddenly, two pure white flower-buds appeared, one larger and taller than the other. A sweet fragrance came from them.
“Sidapaksa, look here! Beside me is our child. He himself will tell you who drowned him,” the taller one spoke.
“Father, my mother is innocent. Gradmother threw me into the river. Now I’m happy because my beloved mother has come with me,” the smaller one spoke. Then, the two flowers vanished into the water. They left their fragrance behind.
Since then, people call the city on its banks of the river Banyuwangi. Banyu means water and wangi mean fragrant.