[Book] Khmer Temples in Eastern Thailand

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Readers may be interested in Asger Mollerup’s new book on Khmer sites in Northeast Thailand.

This book is the 2nd of three about Ancient Khmer sites outside the present day Cambodia and the first comprehensive inventory of ancient Khmer sites in eastern Thailand since the now more than one century-old works of Étienne Aymonier, Étienne Lunet de Lajonquière, and Major Erik Seidenfaden, describing some 170 Khmer sites in the provinces of Khorat and Buriram in the first two parts of the book.
Part 3 presents the ancient overland route from Angkor to Phimai marked by seventeen fire-shelters (‘dharmasala’), mentioned in a 12th century inscription. Also fire-shrines and fire-offerings are described.

Source: Khmer Temples in Eastern Thailand

Categories: Angkor Books Thailand


Public Lecture: Ancient Artefacts, Modern Worship, and the Origins of Buddhism in Northeast Thailand and Central Laos

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Dr Stephen Murphy, a Fellow at the ACM will give a lecture next week at the Asian Civilisations Museum in Singapore on Buddhism in Isaan.

Ancient Artefacts, Modern Worship, and the Origins of Buddhism in Northeast Thailand and Central Laos
Date: 13 June 2014
Time: 7 to 8.30pm
Venue: Asian Civilisations Museum, Ngee Ann Auditorium
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An interview with a Thai archaeologist

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13 September 2007 (Bangkok Post) – Bangkok Post carries an interview with Thai archaeologist and anthropologist Srisakra Vallibhotama. I’m no expert in Thai history and archaeology, so I find it interesting of the article’s mention about how he’s challenging the notion of Thai history starting with the Dvaravati kingdom (instead of Sukhothai), and more interestingly his rejection of the theory that Sukohthai was colonised by the Khmers. Of both issues I am unfamiliar with, although I suspect that politics and nationalism is involved somewhere. Would any informed reader like to shed light on the situation?

Champion of Cultural Diversity
As defiant as ever, scholar Srisakra Vallibhotama talks about how his life and work are helping change the landscape of Thai history
Sanitsuda Ekachai

Nearly a decade after his retirement, scholar Srisakra Vallibhotama is still a man of action with a spirit of defiance who considers himself a “master of time”.

At 69, Thailand’s leading anthropologist and archaeologist is still as busy as ever travelling, exploring, writing, editing, teaching – and questioning racist nationalism – to empower people across the country by reconnecting them with their cultural roots.

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Prasat Hin Khao Phanom Rung

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5 April 2007 (Pattaya Daily News) – A short piece on 10th century Prasat Hin Khao Phanom Rung in Buri Ram province. An interesting feature about the temple to Shiva is the possibility that the doorways are aligned to capture a single shaft of light once a year. The Sanskrit and Khmer inscriptions found associated with the temple have also been touched upon in a paper by HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand in Uncovering Southeast Asia’s Past (see related books below).

Prasat Hin Khao Phanom Rung

Where do you come from?..”Buri Rum”..Where is that?

Phanom Rung Historical Park, Chalermphrakiat district, Buri Ram province) In Hindu and Buddhist cosmology, mountains are believed to be homes to the gods. Prasat Hin Khao Phanom Rung, a magnificent temple sanctuary set on the summit of Phanom Rung Hill, was built between the 10th and 13th centuries. According to the stone inscriptions in Sanskrit and Khmer found at the site, the original name of the temple complex is Phanom Rung, Khmer for big mountain

A religious sanctuary dedicated to the Hindu god, Shiva, Prasat Hin Khao Phanom Rung symbolises Mount Kailasa, the heavenly abode of Shiva. Phanom Rung Hill rises 350 metres above the surrounding plain.

Astro-archaeological Phenomenon at Prasat Hin Khao Phanom Rung Astrologers have also predicted that an extraordinary astro-archaeological phenomenon will occur at sunrise during the April 3-5 period this year. The doors of the temple sanctuary are so perfectly aligned that during this period, at sunrise on a cloudless day with clear blue skies, the sun’s rays will shine through all fifteen doorways of the sanctuary in a single shaft of light.

Related Books:
Uncovering Southeast Asia’s Past: Selected Papers from the 10th International Conference of the European Association of Southeast Asian Archaeologists by E. A. Bacus, I. Glover and V. C. Pigott (Eds)
Khmer Civilization and Angkor (Orchid Guides) by D. L. Snellgrove
Adoration and Glory: The Golden Age of Khmer Art by E. C. Bunker and D. Latchford