Thursday, February 10, 2011

Cambodian Temple Week - Preah Rup

Preah Rup is a temple at Angkor, built as the state temple of King Rajendravarman and dedicated in 961 or 962. It is a temple mountain of combined brick, laterite and sandstone construction.

Located just south of the East Baray, or eastern reservoir, Preah Rup is aligned on a north-south axis with the East Mebon temple, another creation of the reign of Rajendravarman. Preah Rup was dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva. Its extensive laterite and brick give it a pleasing reddish tone that is heightened by early morning and late afternoon sunlight.

The temple has a square lay-out and two perimeter walls. To either side inside the eastern gate is a group of three towers aligned north to south; one of the towers appears to have never been built or to have been dismantled later. Further ahead, through another gate, libraries lie to either side of the walkway. Steps lead toward the top level, with carved sitting stone lions arrayed at intermediate stages. 

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