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Archaeological site of Sambor prey Kuk

Photos and description

The most impressive group of Cambodian monuments - Sambor prey Kuk - includes more than 100 temples of stone and brick. Collected in the forest, these buildings are the oldest in the country.

It originally housed the old capital of Upper Chenla, which was called Isanapura, as well as a religious centre for the worship of Shiva. Most of the temples of Sambor prey Kuk was built during the reign of king Isanavarman I (616-65 ad) of brick, laterite and Sandstone and decorated with bas-reliefs. 140 temples Isanapura with numerous prasadam, octagonal towers, symbols of Shiva and the Yoni, ponds and reservoirs, with sculptures of lions, was an important training center in the era of Angkor.

In the early 1970-ies Sambor prey Kuk was bombed, which was conducted by the us air force in support of the struggle of the government of LON Nol against the Khmer Rouge, shell craters are still visible, the area was finally cleared in 2008.

Sambor prey Kuk, located on the Eastern shore of lake Tonle SAP, near the river Seine, is divided into three main groups of square-plan, bounded by a brick wall. The buildings have characteristic thangarasa period simple layout. Structure of group N , Prasat Sambor, belong to the VII century and is considered the main temple of one of the incarnations of Shiva -Gambhiracari. The group's Prasat Yes Puan, includes 22 of a sanctuary of the 7th century, also dedicated to Shiva. The most recent construction dates from the 9th century, they referred to the group C, which includes the Central sanctuary (Prasat Boran) with sculptures of a lion and the Tower of Ashram Issey, there were other structures, but they survived.