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Angkor Archeological Park

Phimeanakas

Explore the heart of the Khmer ancestral empire

     According to scholars, the date of construction of Phimeanakas is problematic. Construction was expected to begin around the end of the 8th century. The temple has an architectural form of the late 10th century, so under Jayavarman V. But it carries decorative elements of the ninth century, eleventh and thirteenth. As for epigraphy, there are inscriptions from the beginning of the 10th and 13th centuries.

Phimeanakas is to be found inside the Royal Palace of Angkor Thom, home to Angkor’s kings for many centuries. According to Zhou Daguan, a Chinese envoy who spent time in Angkor in 1296-97, the king was said to have had intercourse nightly in this temple with a woman who was the incarnation of a nine-headed serpent.

History

     Phimeanakas temple was built in the mid-10th century. In the time of constructing this temple, there was a courtyard around the temple. But due to continuous change, it disappeared until it was discovered by excavations. Phimeanakas temple was considered as a worship place in of the Royal Palace, which covered on the area of 581 meters long and the width of 242 meters.

There are two ponds in the north of the temple – a large pond called Srah Srei (Women’s Bath) and a small pond called Srah Bros (Men’s Bath). In the end of 13th century, Chinese Diplomat Mr. Zhou Daguan heard a legend from the local people about this temple.

According to legend, the king spent the first watch of every night with a woman thought to represent a Nāga in the tower, during that time, not even the queen was permitted to intrude. Only in the second watch the king returned to his palace with the queen. If the Nāga who was the supreme land owner of Khmer land did not show up for a night, the king’s day would be numbered, if the king did not show up, calamity would strike his land.

Discover all the current projects happening in Phimeanakas Temple

Info and tips for visitor

Date :

Circa 10th century

Style

Khleang

Opening hours

7:30 am to 5:30 pm

Reign

Jayavarman V

Religion

Hindu

Tour

Around 20 minutes

Click to take a tour of the photo gallery of Phimeanakas Temple