"Preah Khan" Prah Khan Tip by Blatherwick

Prah Khan, Angkor Wat: 20 reviews and 56 photos

  Preah Khan
by Blatherwick

Preah Khan (Sacred Sword) was yet another temple built by Jayavarman VII. It was constructed in 1191. It is like Ta Prohm as it has overgrowth on the temple. However, this temple is better preserved and has a number of interesting reliefs in it.

Preah Khan is large. It covers 57 hectares. It is enclosed by four concentric walls and surrounded by a moat. It is more like a small town than just a monastery. Inscriptions found at Preah Khan reports that a community of over 90.000 people was associated with it.

The central Buddhist temple at Preah Khan included an image of the Boddhisattva Lokeshrvara, carved to resemble the King's father. There were 282 sub-deities around the main statue, including Khmer heroes and deceased officials. There was even a statue of the usurper-king in front of the temple. Though this seems odd, the Khmers believed that all past kings, even usurpers, guarded the country after death.

Near the west entrance is a unique two storey building supported by columns. It is reminiscent of Roman architecture. The purpose of this structure is unknown.

Directions: 2 km northeast of Angkor Thom. The temple is best entered form the east. Moto drivers will usually drop you off here and pick you up again at the west entrance.

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  • Written Apr 17, 2005
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