Before Angkor there was the Chenla Empire

by KhmerLife on Jul 07, 2020

Before Angkor there was the Chenla Empire

Sambor Prei Kuk meaning “Temple in the richness of the forest” in Khmer has been identified as Ishanapura which was the capital of the Chenla Empire that flourished in the late 6th century to early 7th century. There are more than 100 temples at this site, ten of which are octagonal in shape. Decorated sandstone elements in the site are characteristic of the pre-Angkor decorative idiom, known as the Sambor Prei Kuk Style. Some of these elements, including lintels, pediments and colonnades, are true masterpieces. The art and architecture developed here became models for other parts of the region and lay the ground for the unique Khmer style of the Angkor period.

The temple zone of Sambor Prei Kuk was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2017.

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