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Preah khan monastic complex: angkor, cambodia world monuments fund - Preah Kahn Temple - Preah Kahn - ABOUTAsia Travel



The Preah Khan temple located just outside the capital city Angkor Thom was built in 1191; its name translates to “the Sacred Sword”.

The temple was built by Jayavarman VII, a Buddhist King who liberated Angkor by driving out the occupying forces of the Cham. The King who earlier dedicated the Ta Prohm temple to his mother, dedicated the Preah Khan to his father. The statue of Lokeshvara was carved to resemble the King’s father.

The Preah Khan was a temple city occupying a large area surrounded by a moat. The outermost enclosure was built up with wooden houses and huts where common people lived. The wooden structures have long gone. On the grounds were also a hospital and a “house with fire”. The small inner sanctuaries are cramped with a great number of temple structures, including a well preserved Hall of Dancers.

Constructed: Late 12th century Religion: Buddhist King / Patron: Jayavarman VII Style: Bayon Preah Khan is a huge monastic complex. Its many passages are full of carvings. The complex was dedicated to Jayavarman VII's father and served as the residence of the king during the reconstruction of his permanent home in Angkor Thom. Some of the Buddha carvings in the central corridor were vandalized during the Hindu resurgence. There is a building west of the main complex with round columns which was very unusual.

The temple is still largely unrestored: the initial clearing was from 1927 to 1932, and partial anastylosis was carried out in 1939. Since then free-standing statues have been removed for safe-keeping, and there has been further consolidation and restoration work. Throughout, the conservators have attempted to balance restoration and maintenance of the wild condition in which the temple was discovered: one of them, Maurice Glaize, wrote that;

The temple was previously overrun with a particularly voracious vegetation and quite ruined, presenting only chaos. Clearing works were undertaken with a constant respect for the large trees which give the composition a pleasing presentation without constituting any immediate danger. At the same time, some partial anastylosis has revived various buildings found in a sufficient state of preservation and presenting some special interest in their architecture or decoration.

Since 1991, the site has been maintained by the World Monuments Fund. It has continued the cautious approach to restoration, believing that to go further would involve too much guesswork, and prefers to respect the ruined nature of the temple. One of its former employees has said, "We're basically running a glorified maintenance program. We're not prepared to falsify history".[8] It has therefore limited itself primarily to stabilisation work on the fourth eastern gopura, the House of Fire and the Hall of Dancers

The Preah Khan temple located just outside the capital city Angkor Thom was built in 1191; its name translates to “the Sacred Sword”.

The temple was built by Jayavarman VII, a Buddhist King who liberated Angkor by driving out the occupying forces of the Cham. The King who earlier dedicated the Ta Prohm temple to his mother, dedicated the Preah Khan to his father. The statue of Lokeshvara was carved to resemble the King’s father.

The Preah Khan was a temple city occupying a large area surrounded by a moat. The outermost enclosure was built up with wooden houses and huts where common people lived. The wooden structures have long gone. On the grounds were also a hospital and a “house with fire”. The small inner sanctuaries are cramped with a great number of temple structures, including a well preserved Hall of Dancers.

Constructed: Late 12th century Religion: Buddhist King / Patron: Jayavarman VII Style: Bayon Preah Khan is a huge monastic complex. Its many passages are full of carvings. The complex was dedicated to Jayavarman VII's father and served as the residence of the king during the reconstruction of his permanent home in Angkor Thom. Some of the Buddha carvings in the central corridor were vandalized during the Hindu resurgence. There is a building west of the main complex with round columns which was very unusual.

The Preah Khan temple located just outside the capital city Angkor Thom was built in 1191; its name translates to “the Sacred Sword”.

The temple was built by Jayavarman VII, a Buddhist King who liberated Angkor by driving out the occupying forces of the Cham. The King who earlier dedicated the Ta Prohm temple to his mother, dedicated the Preah Khan to his father. The statue of Lokeshvara was carved to resemble the King’s father.

The Preah Khan was a temple city occupying a large area surrounded by a moat. The outermost enclosure was built up with wooden houses and huts where common people lived. The wooden structures have long gone. On the grounds were also a hospital and a “house with fire”. The small inner sanctuaries are cramped with a great number of temple structures, including a well preserved Hall of Dancers.


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