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Bayon: Bas-relief depicting Khmer vs. Cham naval battle


Khmer vs. Champ Naval Battle
The image shows a section of the bas-relief on the lower level gallery of the Bayon Temple in Siem Reap, Cambodia. This bas-relief depicts a scene from the naval battle fought between the Khmer and Cham naval ships on Lake Tonle Sap. This is a historical battle in which King Jayavarman VII, the builder of Bayon Temple, lead the Khmer to victory in 1181 CE.

This bas-relief was carved on a polygonal wall with amazing details. There are two ships, each with two layers of sailors/soldiers. The sailors at the bottom are paddling, and the soldiers on the top are fighting. Because of the distinct features of men, the top ship is identified as belonging to the Khmers and the bottom ship belonging to the Chams. As you can see from the image, the Cham soldiers are attacking the Khmer soldiers on the top ship, but the Khmer soldiers are ferocious and seem to have the upper hand. Notice the crocodile on the right devouring a dead Khmer soldier.

Related Pages
Bayon, Angkor Thom, Angkor Wat, Angkor Wat Bas-Reliefs, Ta Prohm, Banteay Srei, Phnom Kulen, Tonle Sap, Cambodia
Bali, Prambanan, Borobudur, Indonesia

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