One of the many hundreds of solid stone carvings at Angkor ruins which are more than 1,000 years old. The stonework was cut from a quarry around 60km from here and hauled using elephants and manpower to site.
To give an idea of scale the face itself is around 2.5 m tall and 1.5m in width.
Facts from www.sacredsites.com
There are two great complexes of ancient temples in Southeast Asia, one at Bagan in Burma, the other at Angkor in Cambodia.
The temples of Angkor, crafted by the Khmer civilization between 802 and 1220 AD, represent one of humankind's most astonishing architectural achievements.
From Angkor the Khmer kings ruled over a vast domain, which reached from Vietnam to China to the Bay of Bengal. The structures one sees at Angkor today, more than 100 stone temples, are the surviving remains of a grand religious, social and administrative metropolis whose other buildings - palaces, public buildings, and houses - were built of wood and are long since decayed and gone.
Conventional theories presume the lands where Angkor stands were chosen as a settlement site because of their strategic military position and agricultural potential. Other scholars however, believe the geographical location of the Angkor complex and the arrangement of its temples was based on a planet-spanning sacred geography from archaic times.
Using computer simulations it has been shown that the ground plan of the Angkor complex – the terrestrial placement of its principal temples - mirrors the stars in the constellation of Draco at the time of spring equinox in 10,500 BC. While the date of this astronomical alignment is far earlier than any known construction at Angkor, it appears that its purpose was to architecturally mirror the heavens in order to assist in the harmonization of the earth and the stars.
Both the layout of the Angkor temples and iconographic nature of much its sculpture are also intended to indicate the celestial phenomenon of the precession of the equinoxes and the slow transition from one astrological age to another.
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batalay (35555) 2010-12-27 17:25
A vertical format works beautifully to reveal the size and details of this carving, one of hundreds. In the lush tropical forrest, these statues have survived for a millennium, and they have even survived the tragedy of the Khmer Rouge of a generation ago.
Warm regards and Happy New Year,
jaywalker (16099) 2010-12-28 10:53
Hi Murray, Great artwork with the face carved on the side of this cliff, you have captured the sharp quality superbly & excellent light, it's a shame more people have not appreciated this picture, TFS, kind regards Wilson.