Photographer's Note

I am trying to collect the trace of a nation with its people. My attempt focuses on the Champa Towers left over along the thin stretch of land from Quang Tri to South Viet Nam.
Therefore I continue to post this shot. I hope you like it.

An other information for My son

One of SE Asia's greatest sites
The Cham built My Son, considered by archaeologists to be in the same league as some of Southeast Asia's greatest archaeological sites, including Angkor in Cambodia, Bagan in Myanmar, Ayutthaya in Thailand and Borobudur in Indonesia.
All these sites share the common characteristic of having been strongly influenced by India. The Cham adopted the Hindu gods brought to them early on through their extensive trade with India, hence the presence of Shiva and Nandi at My Son.
My Son is an impressive site, although admittedly some of the 10 complexes--like Group E--are mere shadows of their former selves. Time and nature have taken their toll, as did the Viet-Nam War (which the Vietnamese call the American War). American bombers destroyed much of My Son in an attempt to root out the Viet Cong.
Forlorn as some of the temple complexes now look, awaiting the archaeological puzzle skills of scholars, one still can get a pretty good idea of My Son's former grandeur by visiting the complex called B, regarded as the center of My Son. Here, it is easy to see the layout of buildings that typically make up a Cham religious site.
The main structure is the sanctuary, called the kalan, housing a linga, a stylized phallus symbolizing the god Shiva. Group B's kalan was originally built by Cham King Bhadravarman in the fourth century A.D. Next to the kalan is the koshagraha, where sacred books were stored. In front of both buildings is the gopura, a gateway or gate tower, that once led into the religious complex.
Outside the gopura lies the mandapa, a meditation hall. Today it's part of Group D, but originally it almost certainly belonged to Group B. Those who once came here to worship and leave offerings would meditate in the mandapa, then enter through the gopura to reach the kalan.
My Son is also about lovely details found everywhere: remnants of statues in niches on temple facades; elaborate pyramidal roofs typical of Cham temples, many with plants sprouting from them; inscribed stele like the one in Group G with 12th-century Sanskrit script, and, of course, the bull Nandi.
My Son is located 40 miles southwest of Danang. Along the way, 10 miles from the site, is Tra Kieu, first capital of Champa from the fourth to the 10th centuries. My Son was the religious center, Tra Kieu the administrative. Not much remains today of Tra Kieu other than ramparts, but some of the finest Cham sculptures were unearthed here in the late 1920s and are now displayed in the Cham Museum in Danang.

ChrisJ, feather, capthaddock, aznegrao, jhm, john_c, ndb1958, weswang, singuanti, Fon has marked this note useful

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Additional Photos by Huy V Tran (huynt) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 846 W: 15 N: 932] (5081)
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