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Britney's and Bethany's Angkorpedia

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Bethany Emonson

on 5 November 2014

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Transcript of Britney's and Bethany's Angkorpedia

Britney and Bethany's Angkorpedia
Location
During the 15th-19th century In South-East Asia Cambodia was run by the profound Khmer Empire. Starting in 802 CE by Jayavarman II,the Khmer Empire gained power gradually throughout centuries and at its highest peak of reign, it controlled Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and Laos. The capital of this dominant empire was a city called Angkor. The Angkor city was an area that was situated 6km north of Siemreab and covered an area roughly the size of 400km2. Roughly the same size as modern Los Angeles, Angkor is one of the most famous archaeological sites because of its famous religious monuments, extraordinarily detailed infrastructures and its mysterious disappearance. Because of these incredible yet fragile features, the Angkor area was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1992 and the property was adopted in 1995. On February 19th 2015, it will have been owned by the Royal Decree APSARA national Authority for 20 years.


Barays
Angkor city had reservoirs in Cambodia. The largest Barays is the ‘West barays. It is rectangular in shape and measured approximately 8 by 2.1 kilometres. Today a part of this baray is still underwater. In the centre of the baray is the West Mebon, a very small Hindu temple built on an artificial island. It was built to hold water that fed irrigations canals in dry time. Men would dig these reservoirs by hand because they didn’t have a lot of equipment to make these waterways. Construction of the Baray began in the 11th Century during the reign of King Suryavarman I. Farmers cropped the second largest Baray even though there is no water. The second largest Baray was called the East Baray, it was measured roughly 7,150 by 1740 meters. Its dikes contain roughly 8 million cubic metres.
Religions
The area of Angkor is globally recognised for its prestigious and extremely detailed religious monuments that it beholds. However, the marvellous temples and statues were altered several times throughout the many centuries it was inhabited in order to keep up with the religion the king who was ruling at the time believed in. Angkor is more commonly famous for its 65 metre tall temple, Angkor Wat. Angkor Wat was originally built as a Hindu temple in 1113-1150 but was converted to a Buddhist temple in the 14th century.
The start of the Khmer empire in the 9th century was led by Hinduism, specifically the people worshipped the gods Shiva and Vishnu. This religious belief came to a finish at the end of the 12th century. This is when Buddhism arose. However, in the middle of the 13th century in 1243, King Jayavarman VIII, tried to change all the temples back to Hinduism but was overthrown by his son-in-law who was a devoted Buddhism follower. At the end of the 13th century in 1295 the dominant religion of modern Cambodia today, Theravada Buddhism, was introduced.


The start of the Khmer empire in the 9th century was led by Hinduism, specifically the people worshipped the gods Shiva and Vishnu. This religious belief came to a finish at the end of the 12th century. This is when Buddhism arose. However, in the middle of the 13th century in 1243, King Jayavarman VIII, tried to change all the temples back to Hinduism but was overthrown by his son-in-law who was a devoted Buddhism follower. At the end of the 13th century in 1295 the dominant religion of modern Cambodia today, Theravada Buddhism, was introduced.


'Discovery' of Angkor
Although there are many tourists travelling in and out of Angkor today, the city is no longer inhabited by people and is no longer the lively capital it was all those centuries ago. There are many rumours and legends about the mysterious and sudden disappearance of Angkor city, some more ridiculous than others. But what really happened? The most common and realistic theory I came across was that about an invading. In the 15th century, in 1431, a Siemreab army allegedly raided the area and forced abandonment upon the Angkorians and it was recorded that there were least five hundred residents to flee.
It is hard to pinpoint an exact date of the first discovery of the ‘jungle-swallowed’ city, but there are a few early visits and documents recorded that I found. For example, it was written by the Portuguese Diego De Couto, that a Cambodian King came across the abandoned city when he was hunting for elephants in the mid-16th century. Proof of written reports left by Spanish missionaries who visited the site throughout the 15th and 16th centuries were found and in during the 17th century the Japanese left calligraphy inscriptions on several pillars. During these Japanese visits, Kenryo Shimano, (who is the oldest known illustrator/author of Angkor) drew a detailed map of Angkor Wat.
Reliefs
Relief sculptures show scenes that help an understanding of neighboring societies.It shows this through raised pictures like the Angkor Wat temple complex, it was built to signify and replicate the five peaks of Mt Meru, the home of the gods in Hindu Mythology. You usually find that most reliefs are carved into wood, sand stone or simular flat materials, this leaves a blank back ground so the focus of the art work is on the raised pictures to tell the story. Reliefs are common throughout the world on the walls of buildings and a variety of smaller objects. Reliefs are less fragile and more firm if the sculpture is on the wall because then it is less likely to be destroyed.
Threats to Angkor
Angkor temple complex faced ‘critical’ threats in the form of heavy traffic. Hundreds of thousands of visitors climb over the ruins of Angkor every year causing heavy deterioration of original Khmer stonework. Number of visitors to Angkor Wat had increased by 188% since 2000, from 840,000 to 2,420,000 since 2009. This shows how conservation of the site has been over looked. Many tourism companies have taken to the site and little to money has stayed in the local community to help fund conservation of the stones at the temple.
Example of relief
King riding Elephant relief
Tourists
Threats
Threats
Kenryo Shimano Map
Hilman wonders map
Angkor temple
Angkor Baray
Buddha
Baray and temple
Tree Forest (discovery)
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