Angkor Wat

– translated to “City of Temples”

-Built towards the end of their empire which was already struggling and the building process put more strain on the empire.
– built by the Khmer empire for King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century (meant as the king’s state temple and capital city” faces westward unlike other temples because it imitates funerary processions. While it is for King Surbavarman’s residence after death, it is also meant for the worship of the hindu god Vishnu.
– built out of sandstone
– surrounding city Angkor conists of more than 100 stone temples (other popular temples include Phnom Bakheng and the Bayon)
-the main temple of Angkor Wat in the style of a Temple Mountain which represents Mt Meru (home of the Hindu gods and center of the metaphysical and physical universe).
-contains eight friezes representing tales of Hinduism and historic scenes (i.e. griffins, unicorns, winged dragons, and celestial dancing gals) meant to assist the faithful in enlightenment.
– It was transferred from being a Hindu temple to Bhuddist during the reign of Jayavarman because he had adopted Buddhism personally. The only change in the temples was that they now featured many portrayals of Buddha including the “Hall of a thousand Buddhas”. One former statue of Vishnu is actually dressed as Buddha.
-a moat and external wall surrounds the monument
-architecture represents the culture’s affiliation with the cosmos

to this day Angkor Wat is still on the flag of Cambodia

One Response to “Angkor Wat”

  1. lin Says:

    Very interesting, technical difficulties aside.

    Did Ankor Wat have a Hindu-Buddhist fusion similar to that of the Daoist-Buddhist fusion in China? Or was it more contentious?

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