My Son

 

My Son, the former cultural and religious centre of the mighty Champa kingdom, is located some 70 kilometres south-west of Danang.  The architecture of this intriguing site is considered to be related to other impressive cities of Indian-influenced civilisations in Southeast Asia, namely Angkor in Cambodia, Ayuthaya in Thailand, Borobudur in Java Indonesia and Bagan in Myanmar.   

 

The earliest writings discovered in the My Son ruins suggested that this site was first built by King Bhadresvara during the 4th century to worship Siva, an important divinity guarding the Champa king and his kingdom.  It is believed that this first construction was mainly of wood which was later destroyed by a casualty of fire two centuries later.    

 

The beginning of 7th century saw King Sambhuvarman re-building the religious centre in My Son.  Unlike his predecessor, King Sambhuvarman decided to use more durable materials such as baked bricks to ensure that the construction could withstand the passage of time.  Different religious towers were added to My Son over a period between 7th to 13th century, making it the most important architectural centre of the Champa kingdom. 

 

The My Son ruins was first discovered by a French archaeologist, M.C. Paris, in 1898.  Today, Vietnamís most distinguished centre of the earlier Champa kingdom is yet another UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site. 

 

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