via Phnom Penh Post, 11 December 2018: The stone inscription dated to 633 contains a reference to Suvarnabhumi or the ‘Land of Gold’
Committee members of the Kiri Sdachkong pagoda have agreed to the government’s request to move the stone tablets bearing inscriptions dated to the year 633 – kept on the pagoda’s grounds – to the National Museum in Phnom Penh, on a condition that “cleansing rituals” are organised prior to the transfer to “avoid any curse”.
Over two decades ago, a group of villagers were excavating a pond when they heard a sound they did not expect – the clink of their shovels on stone.
As they dug further, several slabs covered in carvings emerged. Soon they found themselves excavating the ruins of an ancient temple. The tablets were put under a hut, and for 20 years villagers worshipped them.
Little did they know they were sitting on an archaeological find that may reshape a centuries-old historical, religious and political debate – that of the actual location of the fabled “Land of Gold”, the ancient realm of