Vietnam draws up list of national treasures

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Vietnam has approved a list of 30 national treasures representing the country’s past, including Dong Son drums and various archaeological and historical artefacts.

Tripod Cauldrons at Hue's Imperial Citadel, Viet Nam News 20121004

Tripod Cauldrons at Hue’s Imperial Citadel, Viet Nam News 20121004

National treasures recognised [Link no longer active]
Viet Nam News, 04 October 2012
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Speed review: Archaeology news from the last two weeks

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Between the Christmas and New Year celebrations, and my two weeks at the field, I didn’t have the time to cover any of the archaeology news that has surfaced in the last three weeks. In Wednesday Rojak style, here’s the quick summary of what’s been happening in Southeast Asia over the last three weeks: Skeletal remains in Malaysia, Digital Reconstruction in Cambodia, Restoration works in Vietnam and a Construction Mess in Indonesia.

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Vietnamese archaeologists restore Dong Son drum

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27 July 2007 (Vietnam Net Bridge) – Archaeologists have managed to patch the remains and identify a Dong Son drum (previously mentioned in this site here). The drum belongs to an associated set of artefacts dating some 3,000 years old. The story mentions that the drum has a steel handle and I think this is highly unlikely to be an accurate description of the drum.

Vietnam Net Bridge, 27 Jul 2007

Archeologists restore ancient bronze drum

Archeologists have patched up and identified ancient bronze drum pieces recently discovered in Krong Pach district in Dak Lak province as part of a Heger Classification’s Type 1 drum.

The drum is about 50.5 cm high and 63 cm across with designs engraved all over the body part. The flat-shaped handle is made of steel of 6 cm in width and 8.5 cm in length.

In the area where the drum was unearthed, archeologists also found several iron and bronze tools as well as ancient ceramic pieces. According to experts, the area might have been an ancient burial ground where dead bodies were buried in bronze drums.

Similar tombs have been discovered in the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak. Besides the bronze drum, many artifacts dating back to 3,000 years ago have also been found in Krong Pack district. Archeologists suggest that there is a link between the province and the ancient Dong Son culture.


More information about Dong Son drums can be found in:
The Bronze Age of Southeast Asia (Cambridge World Archaeology) by C. Higham
Dong Son Drums in Viet Nam
– Bronze Dong Son Drums by Ha Thuc Can

Collectors showcase Vietnamese antiquities in exhibition

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08 June 2007 (VietNam Net Bridge) – 20 collectors of Vietnamese antiquities showcase the best and oldest in an exhibition in Hue City for the Traditional Craft Festival. It is interesting to note that the aim of this exhibition is to provide inspiration for craft makers to produce antique-style souvenirs!

20070608 VietNam Net Bridge

Antiquarians to descend upon Hue

For the first time, hundreds of antiques made of materials ranging from wood to gold owned by 20 collectors nationwide will be exhibited at the 2007 Hue Traditional Craft Festival that starts today, June 8.

Other collectors will come to the festival with more than 30 antiques dating from the Nguyen Dynasty, Vietnam’s last dynasty. Thanh Hoa province will contribute the most to the festival with nearly 200 antiques, more than 100 of which date back to the Dong Son period.

According to the organisation committee, of the collectors to participate in the upcoming festival, only collector Hoang Van Thong from Thanh Hoa has established his own private antique museum. Others have exhibited their collections at many places, but this will be their first participation in a bronze, wooden and gold antique exhibition in a festival.

Read more about the Hue 2007 Traditional Craft Festival.

For books about Vietnamese antiquities, you might want to read:
Art & Archaeology of Fu Nan by J. C. Khoo
The Art of Champa by J. Hubert
Vietnamese Ceramics: A Separate Tradition by J. Stevensen, J. Guy and L. A. Cort

Dong Son serves a tasty plate of the past

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1 April 2007 (Viet Nam News) – It’s a museum featuring Dong Son drums! It’s a restaurant serving Chinese and Vietnamese food! Actually, it’s a little bit of both…

Dong Son serves a tasty plate of the past

With 2000-year-old bronze drums decorating its walls, Ha Noi’s Dong Son restaurant is a stylish place for a meal. Nguyen My Ha reports the food lives up to the surroundings. When the Dong Son Drum Restaurant opened three months ago, people weren’t sure what to expect from an eatery filled with 2,000-year-old artefacts in the northwest corner of Ha Noi. Beyond its ornate decorations and display cases is a highly professional staff and tasty treats from a one-of-a-kind restaurant, located on the second floor of a private museum. Owner Nguyen Dai Duong, who’s name means the ocean, is the son of a sailor. Also the owner of the New Century Club in downtown Ha Noi, Duong said he opened Dong Son to showcase his collection of bronze drums made about 2,000 years ago in central Viet Nam. … The artefacts are safely displayed in glass boxes and lit as they would be in a real museum. A message above the antiques challenges guests to spot a fake and receive a prize of US$10,000. On the corner of Tran Dang Ninh and Cau Giay avenues, the Dong Son Drum Restaurant is more than just a place to eat and relax. The restaurant holds pieces of our history and rich culture for Vietnamese and tourists to enjoy in a traditional setting.


Related Books:
Southeast Asia: From Prehistory to History by I. Glover
The Bronze Age of Southeast Asia (Cambridge World Archaeology) by C. Higham
– Bronze Dong Son Drums by Ha Thuc Can

Dong Son drum found by chance

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12 Sep 2006 (VietNam Net Bridge)

VietNam Net Bridge, 12 Sep 2006

Dong Son drum found by chance

A resident of the northern province of Ha Tay unearthed an ancient drum when he was building his house, an official of the local Department of Culture and Information said Monday.

Experts from the Vietnam History Museum tested the drum and came to conclusion that the 2000-year-old drum belongs to Dong Son Civilization.

Related Books:
– Bronze Dong Son Drums by Ha Thuc Can
Dong Son Drums in Viet Nam