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History of Phnom Penh City


The history of Phnom Penh City was at least 500 B.C. Phnom Penh city is considered to be a new city, governed by King Chau Ponhea Yat in 15th century. The discovery of society achievement at the time such as Metal bell, Ceramics and the round city around Choeung Ek has changed this theory. Based on these historical accounts; we can conclude that this site used to be a cultural hub at the period of at least 500 B.C. In conclusion, the prehistoric measurement of Phnom Penh City is proven for the first time by archeology.

The origins of the Khmer culture


From the chronology of Khmer history, the Khmers belonging to the Mon-Khmer ethnic group are the oldest inhabitants of the Indochinese peninsula. The origins of their civilization can be dated from between one million and 680.000 years ago, having evolved since from generation to generation to form an elaborate specific cultural mode. Cambodian history is divided into two periods: the prehistoric and historic eras. Each period is also divided into different ages. The prehistoric era consists in the Paleolithic Age, including the Pebble Culture,the Neolithic (polished stone), and Metal ages. Similarly, the historic period is divided into three parts: the Ancient, Middle and Modern epochs.

Prehistoric cities in Surin province

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In order to discover the past, the most paramount factor is to understand the growth and evolutions of ancient human of communities in North-Eastern of Thailand and from stage to another stage they should study all traces of ancient culture. Concerning to this advantage, we would like to raise only four downtowns in Surin to make comment. Although the finding was initiated by Thai experts, we also need to conduct deeper analysis. According to thorough examinations and evaluations on historic causes, what available they are in Surin and other provinces of Thailand and Cambodia today. The notification is not logical because prior to the arrival of the race in the region and prior to the integration of the province into the kingdom of Thailand’s, the territory was the former legitimate-ownership of the Khmer. In this regard, we must pay attention on an interpretation that those prehistoric downtowns were created by Khmer ancestors instead of viewing the achievements as Thailand’s before 13rd century. In this point, we can illustrate that the sources of Mon-Khmer’s downtowns in prehistory scatter in the whole countries of Thailand and Cambodia and also are one of Khmer cultural basis prior to Indianization. Furthermore, as the duo nations we also discovered traces of prehistoric culture in South Vietnam. The most important and oval prehistoric-downtowns in Surin that their absolute structures can be looked down from the sky are at Kay Yai village, Preah Bet village, Slak Day village in provincial town of Surin. According to video file from research, it revealed the traces of Khmer culture dated around 5,000 years ago. It is a key proof that allows us to understand the ways of organizing districts and villages or communities by our Khmer national before the acceptance of influence of Indian culture that made the locations of Krung (Khmer terms) into Borei (Sanskrit terms) by Indian style. In Korat plateau, the Indian culture flourished in the region since early 6th century. The prehistoric sites with oval shapes in Surin province and prehistoric sites in Memot of Kompong Cham province are the same. In conclusion through analysis, we could evaluate the landscape of Krung in Khmer style into Borei(puri) or Pura in Indian’s and then reforms were made the east. It is very fine that the new turning of history made rapid development by Indian infrastructure. Finally, in the complex of the ancient cities some tools made of such polished stone as axes, colored and colorless ceramics and other kinds of appliance.

Khmer symbolic round village at Siem Reap

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Siem Reap land as well as other major provinces - were ancient sacred lands, meaning those places were in the stage of advanced development already at the end of metal age round objects are explained to be proof to back up this theory. The city structure of these historical sites symbolizes the philosophy of Mon-Khmer communities before Idea urbanism which has a good characteristic.

Khmer round village at Wat Choeung Ek

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Located about five kilometer from the Phnom Penh City, Wat Choeung Ek area, there was an ancient settlement during the end of the Metal age. Time and illicites excavations have left its marks on this prehistoric site and the Round Village (Phoum Moul in khmer language) is now in a very poor condition. The round form of this village is a sacred form and is a most beautiful example of the prehistoric culture showing us the architectural development of Phnom Penh City from previous historical period. Looking into this ancient remain we can see the history of area before the indianization of the region.

Khmer sculptures in prehistoric era


Having found some pots color during the end of metallographic that have picture drawing a person representation to ancestors. However, some ceramics are satisfaction of representing to existence of the exactly agriculture but that is also a sign of representing to the ancestors was been died long time ago.

The ancestor’s sculptures on the prehistoric period jar in Udon Thani’s Ban Chiang Village (Thai Reference).

The ancestor’s sculptures on the prehistoric period jar in Udon Thani’s Ban Chiang Village (Thai Referen

Khmer Vertically and Coffin stone in Kampuchea Krom

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Until now, there is still no any detail research on khmer prehistoric stone yet but there was existing document about Vertically sacred stone and stone coffin in Kampuchea Krom as below.

Vertically sacred stone
Until now, there is still no any thorough research on vertical stone or Menhir stone which was put on standing for religious causes in prehistory yet. This stone, in France, called Menhir is in the state of universal. The recent finding of these typical stones in Traninh of Laos and in Thailand revealed that the Menhir culture is one of stone architectures certainly built by Khmer ancestors. Off Memot, in the middle of a rounded village a vertical stonewasdiscovered but in Buddhist style because its lotus-shaped parts were embedded below.So what we see here is that when Indian religion propagated this area those sacred Menhir stones changed their forms and meanings and finally became border posts for pagodas. Please be informed that factors that can be main assistance to the view is that Buddhist-venerated sites is located in Kalasin province, Thailand there were numerous vertical stones found in prehistory in combination of borders in Indian style. In this context, we regard Khmer nationals to be really experienced with the vertical stone culture; however, under influences of Brahmanism and Buddhism those Menhir columns have become border posts or Buddhist boundaries (Sima) particularly in Chenla era. Mostly of them contain the carved biography of Buddha during last existence or Jataka.On the other hand, besides belief in vertical stone in the center of or near any district, village, or town which today called delimited stone (Thmor lak), our Khmer people also believe in grown stone that have similiar meanings to Menhir column that presumably called spirit stone of ancestral guardian of the soil. (Thmor Nakta Chas Srok).Truly, the belief in natural stones is a Neolithic culture that is universal because stone stands for solidity or immortality of nature in general and in the context of life, vertical stone is a symbol of organ or genitalia for reproduction.Until today, according to the will of people this typical column also stands for spirits or for stone of ancestral spirits and it has a power that stations and play a sacred role in protecting and looking after offspring in communities.

Khmer rounded and oval culture village

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Cambodia, Kompong Cham province, the rounded village number 15 in Krek, which took birth in late New Stone era (culture of Polish Stone), 5000-1500 BC. The typical culture still continued until Metal Age (around 1500 BC). Early 1st-century A.D saw habitats of Khmer communities of origin in historic era (town) or a number of main urban were developed under influence of Kalinga (Indian culture). In reality, the major number of rounded villages was abandoned due to unfavorable nature (low land).

The research on rounded villages in Cambodia by Paris and Parmentier and recently according to students of university of archeology in promotion 6, Khmer national in prehistoric time created their own architecture using land and timers as raw materials to erect homes, villages with ramparts that can protect them from fierce animal or from other tribes when at war. Generally, when we look down from the sky we can see it is like round. The village provides a habitat for Khmer traditional communities with natural soil wall of 1.80 meters of height surrounded. It is noticed that the majority of rounded villages have slopes from high hills situated in South-Eastern and heading downward North-West According to sources, some fosses have their sizes of between 20 meters to 25 meters especially in at sites of lot number 62/52 at rubber plantations in Kompong Cham province.The students' findings also revealed that in the complex of rounded villages there are some water fosses surrounding higher hills which has diameter about 150 meters to 200 meters. Researchers came to conclusions that through each rampart there are gateways for the village. Furthermore, in the center of some villages Menhir stones were discovered and believed to have relations with ancestral guardian of the soil. In some districts of Banteay Meanchey province, the tradition was preserved until today but in the image of Lak Moeung boundaries or ancestral guardian of Lak Moeung .“Moeung”, the Siam term, is referred to downtown.

Khmer traditional body tattoo in prehistoric era

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The late Neolithic and early Metal ages (2500years-500years BC) are the periods of time that Khmer ancestors still made a living as tribal farmers and had already practiced tattoo.

Khmer breechcloth in the prehistoric era

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As mentioned in the previous point, the custom of dressing with breechcloth by the Khmer Leou indicates that the use of this dress is very ancient, as attested by ancient documents. The figuration and other chronicles bear the testimony of the Khmer breechcloth custom, depicted in artifacts of the Metal age, found in Nokor Reachsima, located in Thailand and also in bronze sculptures in Cambodia.These archeological testimonies were treated as an outcome of Khmer traditional society. The Khmer breechcloth is more than 2500 years old. In addition to the to Chronicles and other proofs of breechcloth dressing, three tiny of bronze sculptures have been found by Mr.

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