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Ref ID: 36118
Ref Type: Newspaper Article
Authors: Carter, Alison Kyra
Title: Household archaeology at Angkor Wat
Date: 2016
Source: Khmer Times, July 7
Abstract: One way to begin understanding the lives of the non-elite members of Angkor is by excavating their households. Through excavations of their living spaces, archaeologists can understand the daily practices of people in the past. This kind of work can also tell us more about the variation between different households, communities and settlements, as well as the differences between elites and non-elites. In this way, we can come to understand Angkorian society from the ground up. Archaeology at Angkor has primarily focused on the imposing stone temple structures, whose inscriptions tell us about the gods, kings, and elites. We have only a few clues about the lives of everyday Angkorian people. In 1296 AD, a Chinese envoy named Zhou Daguan visited Angkor and described what he saw. He observed that high status people lived in large houses, parts of which were covered in roof tiles, but that commoners lived in smaller houses with thatch roofs. This is the only written description of the houses of the citizens of Angkor, but there are also depictions of houses and daily life on the bas-reliefs of the Bayon temple. A French-Cambodian team has also excavated some houses in the outer Angkor region. However, we know little about the housing of the central area where the majority of the temples are located and where many people lived.
Date Created: 2/1/2017