Do you know this sherd?

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Sorry for the lack of posts this week, as I was finishing up a lot of work and posts will resume again next Monday (with a lot of catching up to do!). Just a quick query from our Facebook page, posted by Christina Sewall who is looking for information about this ceramic piece:

Christina writes: “I’m studying a certain ceramic piece for my dissertation, and was wondering if anyone had come across anything similar in SE Asia. These were excavated in NE Thailand at Ban Non Wat. If anyone has any ideas what they are, or has seen them in any context (museums, digs, etc.) please get in touch with me. Thanks!” You can get in touch with her by emailing chrsewall [at] tidewater [dot] net.

Wednesday Rojak #19

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After missing the last two weeks’ installments, Wednesday Rojak is back again this week for a mishmash of Southeast Asia and related-to-archaeology posts.

  • Pensée Libre takes us to the Banteay Srei in Angkor (site is in French)
  • The Ethnographer’s Note posts a soon-to-be published paper by Edward M. Bruner entitled “The Ethnographer, Tourist in Indonesia”.
  • Backpackers Mal and Pam make their stopover to Laos and Cambodia.
  • While Jeffrey visits the Laos National Museu, finding it a little short on artifacts, but not on scope.
  • Lilie Down Under posts something from her two nights in Sukhothai.
  • While PhD candidate Alison shows us how salt is produced in Ban Non Wat.
  • Katie visits Candi Borobudur in Java.
  • Jim visits the lesser-known Angkor temple at Koh Ker.

In this series of weekly rojaks (published on Wednesdays) I’ll feature other sites in the blogosphere that are related to Southeast Asia and archaeology in general. Got a recommendation for the next Wednesday rojak? Email me!

Wednesday Rojak #3

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Angkor and Cambodia takes centrestage in this week’s Wednesday rojak, as we visit some lesser-known temples and explore the beginnings of the Angkor Civilization:

  • Saraburi gives a a look at Prasat Phanom Rung at Buriram, Thailand, a 12th century Angkoran temple complex dedicated to Shiva.
  • Phoenixstorm explores another Angkoran temple, Ta Keo, another temple to Shiva dedicated around the year 1000.
  • Xander tucks into some grolan, a Khmer traditional rice snack.
  • While not exactly new, K. Kris Hirst, the archaeology guide at about.com hosts a feature on the Thai site of Ban Non Wat, where Charles Higham has been investigating a series of prehistoric burials that may have led to the rise of the Angkor civilization.

In this series of weekly rojaks (published on Wednesdays) I’ll feature other sites in the blogosphere that are of related to archaeology in Southeast Asia. Got a recommendation for the next Wednesday rojak? Email me!

Related books:
Angkor Cities and Temples by C. Jaques
Southeast Asia: From Prehistory to History by P. S. Bellwood and I. Glover (Eds)
Angkor and the Khmer Civilization (Ancient Peoples and Places) by M. D. Coe
The Excavation of Ban Lum Khao (The Origins of Civilization of Angkor, Vol. 1) by C. Higham
The Civilization of Angkor by C. Higham

Teams Explore Roots of Angkor Civilization

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29 November 2006 (Earthwatch Institute. released by Newswise) – Discovery Kids is featuring the Origins of Angkor project in Thailand in an episode airing Dec 3 and 10.

Teams Explore Roots of Angkor Civilization

Five seasons of excavations at Ban Non Wat, in Northeast Thailand, have unearthed 470 human burials covering a time span of more than 2,000 years. Earthwatch-supported research at this great moated site, led by anthropologist Dr. Charles Higham of University of Otago (New Zealand), gives clues to the roots of the famous Angkor civilization. A Year On Earth, a new film about students making a difference through participation in scientific research, features some of these discoveries.

“The earliest graves, dating to about 2000 BC, contain the remains of the first rice farmers to settle Thailand from their ancestral homelands in the Yangtze Valley of China,” said Higham, principal investigator of Earthwatch’s Origins of Angkor project. “They were buried with ceramic vessels that were decorated with amazing designs, representing the earliest art in this part of the world.” Some of the lidded pots discovered by Earthwatch teams were large enough to contain the remains of adults, while many newly born infants were buried in smaller versions.

Historians typically attribute the rise of the magnificent Angkor civilization, which also built Ankgor Wat, to external, mostly Indian, influences. Earthwatch volunteers working in Thailand have made discoveries that support Higham’s view that the Angkor civilization sprang, at least in part, from indigenous roots. For example, in about 1200 BC, the descendents of the early farmers mentioned above entered the Bronze Age in grand style.

“Until the investigations at Ban Non Wat, Bronze Age cemeteries contained relatively poor burials, the dead being accompanied by a handful of pots and perhaps some shell beads or bangles,” said Higham. “But at Ban Non Wat, excavators found groups of princely graves in which the aristocrats were accompanied by up to 50 pottery vessels, some of which were large and beautifully decorated with red painted designs.”


Related Books:
The Excavation of Ban Lum Khao (The Origins of Civilization of Angkor, Vol. 1) by C. Higham
The Civilization of Angkor by C. Higham
– Northeast Thailand before Angkor: evidence from an archaeological excavation at the Prasat Hin Phimai by S. Talbot and C. Janthed