Preah Ko

Preah Ko temple was officially called Paramesvara, a name which means Supreme God and usually designates Shiva. Here, however, the name Paramesvara also is the posthumous name of King Jayavarman II, the founder of the Angkorian empire. Preah Ko was dedicated by Indravarman in 879 AD (CE) to the memory of Jayavarman II, represented in the central sanctuary of the eastern side of the base platform. The side towers were dedicated to the ancestors of Indravarman himself.

Preah Ko

The rectangular area enclosing the monument measures about 500 meters by 400 meters. The western section may also have once contained other buildings made of less durable materials which served as houses for ordinary inhabitants.

The temple of Preah Ko initiated the tradition of temples dedicated to ancestors which each subsequent Angkorian king had to build, preferably before constructing the temple which would be dedicated to his own destined cult.

From an artistic point of view, we should try to imagine the six sanctuaries of the platform covered in white, finely carved stucco. One can still see remaining sections of this covering which allows us to glimpse the great refinement which the sculptures of the temple once had.

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