Dara Phoeung (APSARA Authority)
Christian Fischer (UCLA, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology)
Paper Short Abstract:
This paper will discuss some of the results of the 2010 archaeological excavation conducted in Neak Poan temple in Angkor, focusing on the religious implications of the data.
Paper long abstract:
In 2010, the Neak Poan temple, located in the northeast part of Angkor (Cambodia) in the middle of the Jayatataka reservoir, was excavated by an APSARA team of archaeologists, just before being filled back up with water. Built by the king Jayavarman VII at the end of the 12th - beginning of the 13th century, this unusual monument shows a cruciform plan of ponds placed around a central sanctuary tower located on a circular island. In this presentation, we will outline some of the key archaeological finds with specific focus on the numerous lingas and ammonites excavated within the sanctuary. By putting these archaeological data into a religious perspective and with the help of spectrographic and compositional study of the materials of these highly symbolic objects, we will attempt to identify the ritual activities of these offering deposits in a Buddhist context.
Archaeologies of religion: material approaches to the study of belief systems in Southeast Asia