[Paper]: Pinle (Maingmaw): Research at an Ancient Pyu City, Myanmar

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A new report published in the Nalanda Sriwiaya Centre Archaeology Report series

Pinle (Maingmaw): Research at an Ancient Pyu City, Myanmar by Myo Nyunt and Kyaw Myo Win

The combined Reports of Excavation at Pinle (Maingmaw) Ancient City highlights the rich heritage of this lesser-known site. Pinle occupies a strategic location bridging the Central Plain of Myanmar and trade routes to Yunnan. Two excavation campaigns and a wider area survey trip are highlighted in the following report. The excavation of a structure from Mound No. 15 revealed one of the finest examples of the complex brick architecture of the first millennium CE Pyu cultures. Various shapes of bricks were adeptly used to create a stepped profile for a stupa mounted on a rectilinear platform. The second excavation identified brick and wall features that were part of a rectilinear entry gate. This particular gate is distinct from those found at other Pyu cities such as Halin, Beikthano, and Sri Ksetra.

Source: NSC Archaeological Reports – ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute

Categories: Books Burma (Myanmar)


Siam Society Lecture: Ancient Jewellery of Myanmar from Prehistory to Pyu Period

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Another lecture at the Siam Society, featuring the ancient jewelry of Myanmar.


Ancient Jewellery of Myanmar from Prehistory to Pyu Period
by Terence Tan
Venue: The Siam Society, Bangkok, Thailand
Date: 4 June 2015
Time: 7.30pm

This book traces the ornaments and artefacts, which brought about the changes in beliefs, rituals, social and cultural aspects of early Myanmar, from the prehistoric to the proto-historical period, and cultural links between China and Myanmar. Links between China and Myanmar are corroborated by bronze artefacts and stone beads from the Samon River Valley, the Bronze-Iron Transition culture that flourished c. 700 BCE-100 CE. Beads from the Samon are linked to the Western Zhou Dynasty of China (11th-8th century BCE). The tiger with cub in the mouth is an iconic artefact from this period. Although the Samon figurines are of different material, due to the wider availability of semi-precious stones in Myanmar, they bear stylistic affinities with the Chinese version.

Gradual changes in the Samon River Valley culture led to the Pyu Era (200 BCE-900 CE), a contemporary of Dvaravati (Thailand), Champa (Vietnam) and Funan (Cambodia). The Pyu were thus a bridge between the Bronze-Iron Transition Age and Myanmar’s early Buddhist period, one of the earliest Buddhist cultures of Southeast Asia. In addition to ancient ramparts and a few inscriptions, there is a wealth of excavated material, from Buddha effigies to golden plates, jewellery, coins and other moveable artefacts. This transition to the Buddhist period shifts the focus from China to India and links with the crossroads of East Asia, visible in the Pyu’s gold dice beads decorated with auspicious symbols and the main events in the Buddha’s life.

Seminar on the Pyu raises ethnic tensions

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A recent seminar on the archaeology of the Pyu, a group of city-states located in central Myanmar, raises some controversy because of suggestions that they once dominated the Mon city-states of lower Myanmar. This tension between the relations between the Pyu and Mon people have led to calls for better research into the archaeology of the Mon and the Pyu.

Excavations at Sru Ksetra, Myanmar Time 20121210

Excavations at Sru Ksetra, Myanmar Time 20121210

Pyu seminar restarts Mon debate
Myanmar Times, 10 December 2012
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