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A New Date for the Phnom Da Images and Its Implications for Early Cambodia

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Title:A New Date for the Phnom Da Images and Its Implications for Early Cambodia
Authors:Dowling, Nancy H.
Keywords:Southeast Asia
art history
early Cambodian art
show 1 moreIndianization of Southeast Asia
show less
LC Subject Headings:Prehistoric peoples--Asia--Periodicals.
Prehistoric peoples--Oceania--Periodicals.
East Asia--Antiquities--Periodicals.
Date Issued:1999
Publisher:University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu)
Citation:Dowling, N. H. 1999. A New Date for the Phnom Da Images and Its Implications for Early Cambodia. Asian Perspectives 38 (1): 51-61.
Series:Volume 38
Number 1
Abstract:The widely held belief that the earliest known Cambodian sculpture from Phnom Da has an early-sixth-century date is challenged. New artistic evidence supports a mid-seventh-century date on which a new chronology for early Cambodian sculpture can be established. This new inception date has implications for the understanding of early Cambodia. It indicates that the Phnom Da images have no association with Rudravarman, the last king of Funan. This separates the Phnom Da images from the named ruler and shortens by 100 years the chronology for early Cambodian sculpture. The earliest known Cambodian images are now inseparable from a widespread artistic development in seventh-century Cambodia, when permanent materials first appeared in temple architecture and sculpture. The seventh century inception date indicates that "the strategy of monumental validation" first appeared in the early to mid-seventh century after the replacement of Funan by Chenla. Only then does the artistic evidence suggest that local rulers seriously began to adopt Indian practices and beliefs that were to characterize Southeast Asia for the next 1000 years. KEYWORDS: Southeast Asia, art history, early Cambodian art, Funan, sculpture, Indianization of Southeast Asia.
ISSN:1535-8283 (E-ISSN)
0066-8435 (Print)
Appears in Collections: Asian Perspectives, 1999 - Volume 38, Number 1 (Spring)

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