via Khmer Times, 12 July 2023: The Apsara National Authority, in collaboration with the University of Hawaii and the University of California, is conducting an archaeological dig at an ancient mound in Angkor Wat to determine the transition from Brahmanism to Theravada Buddhism, studying the structure and age of a vihara temple and collecting samples for carbon dating.
University of Hawaii archaeologist and head of the research project Heng Pipal said the excavation was looking at the structure of the ancient vihara or temple.
The style of the Bai Sema temple boundary marker allows them to determine the age of the vihara’s mound estimated to be from between the 14th to 16th centuries.
He concluded that the ancient Theravada Buddhist temple was built on the site of a temple dedicated to another deity such as Brahmanism, Vishnu or Narayan.
He cited previous case studies to show that the Angkor Wat complex is a suburb of Angkor, which is why people living in Siem Reap are called Angkor Toch.