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Archaeology - Pyu

Individual Documents

Title: Sriksetra Survey Map 2005-2007
Date of publication: April 2008
Author/creator: U Thein Lwin, U Thant Zaw Oo, U Kyaw Myo Win, U Win Kyaing, U Min Tun Tun Win, U Nyein Lwin, Dr. Bob Hudson, Dr. Terry Lustig
Language: English
Source/publisher: Field School of Archaeology, Pyay, University of Sydney via SOAS BULLETIN OF BURMA RESEARCH 5 2007
Format/size: pdf (3MB)
Alternate URLs: https://www.soas.ac.uk/sbbr/editions/file64428.pdf
Date of entry/update: 10 July 2010

Title: A Pyu Homeland in the Samon Valley: a new theory of the origins of Myanmar
Date of publication: March 2005
Description/subject: "Archaeological evidence suggests that between about 500 BC and 200 AD, a ricegrowing population was living in a densely settled system of small villages in the Samon Valley in Upper Myanmar. This area was at the crossroads of ancient trade routes. Wealth was accumulating due to agriculture and to access to the copper resources of the Shan hills, the semi-precious stone and iron resources of the Mount Popa plateau, and the salt resources of Halin. This wealth is evident in grave goods unique to the Samon region, which includes items traded from or inspired by Qin and Han Dynasty China. This paper will explore the possibility that the appearance early in the First Millennium AD of the walled Pyu cities of Maingmaw, Beikthano, Halin and Sriksetra, at remarkably consistent distances from the Samon Valley, may be a consequence of intra-regional population flow from the Samon area. While the Pyu cities shared cultural elements such as religious and decorative items, and coins bearing auspicious symbols, with neighbours including Dhanyawadi and Vesali on the west coast, the Dvaravati settlements of Thailand, and trade centres such as Oc Eo in Vietnam, their relationship to the landscape, to each other and to the Samon valley suggests that they formed a distinct economic and cultural system (Gutman & Hudson 2004)."
Author/creator: Bob Hudson
Language: English
Source/publisher: Proceedings of the Myanmar Historical Commission Golden Jubilee International Conference, Jan12-14, 2005, Yangon
Format/size: pdf (642K)
Alternate URLs: http://acl.arts.usyd.edu.au/~hudson/BH2005Jan.pdf
Date of entry/update: 01 December 2005

Title: Interpreting Pyu material culture: Royal chronologies and finger-marked bricks
Date of publication: June 2004
Description/subject: "Interpretations: Bricks were used to build walls around Pyu and Mon sites in Myanmar and Thailand during the early first millennium AD if not earlier. 1 Many of these bricks have lines on the ends or across the width, patterns made with the fingers while the bricks were still soft. Unlike many other diagnostic Pyu artefacts such as beads and coins, finger-marked bricks are not easily collected or traded. They are cumbersome to transport over great distances, and even when reused today tend to remain in the locality where they were first made. The massive brick walls of Sriksetra, Beikthano and Halin are one of the principal features used to identify these sites as Pyu, although it is now accepted that their occupation pre-dates the construction of walls. Chinese emissaries in the 9th century AD described the city-wall of the P’iao (Pyu) capital as being faced with glazed bricks, part of a general perception that walls designate an area as urban. It has been suggested that the armies of the Nan-chao did not think the newly founded kingdom of Bagan worthwhile to raid, as it had no fortified city (Htin Aung 1967:31)..."
Author/creator: Elizabeth Moore
Language: English
Source/publisher: Myanmar Historical Research Journal, No(13) June 2004, pp.1-57
Format/size: pdf (256K) 30 pages
Date of entry/update: 11 November 2004

Title: THE ART AND CULTURE OF BURMA - Chapter 2: The Pre-Pagan Period: The Urban Age of the Mon and the Pyu
Date of publication: 2002
Author/creator: Richard M. Cooler
Language: English
Source/publisher: Northern Illinois University
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003

Title: Historical Geography of Burma: Creation of enduring patterns in the Pyu period
Date of publication: October 2001
Description/subject: "Pyu civilization flourished during most of the first millennium AD at an urban and complex level, and three patterns established by the Pyu were to leave major imprints on the historical geography of Burma that endured until the late nineteenth century, when the colonial conquest transformed the country demographically and economically. Firstly, the Pyu preferred settlement in the Dry Zone, particularly in the valleys of the tributaries of Burma's greatest rivers; secondly, there was development of a repertoire of Pyu irrigation works operating on a variety of scales and firmly imbedded in social structures as well as in these particular environments and economies; and thirdly, at a time of dominance of Mahayana sects in Indian Buddhism, the Pyus adopted Theravada Buddhism, thereby striking a note that has reverberated in Burma ever since..."
Author/creator: Janice Stargardt
Language: English
Source/publisher: Newsletter, Issue 25, International Institute for Asian Studies (Leiden)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003

Title: Nyaung-gan: A Preliminary Note on a Bronze Age Cemetery near Mandalay, Myanmar (Burma)
Date of publication: April 2001
Description/subject: Abstract: Preliminary excavations were made in 1998 at a cemetery south of Nyaung-gan Village, near Mandalay, in central Myanmar (Burma). The site is located on the edge of a volcanic crater; there are nearby copper deposits. Three main types of artifacts were recovered from the excavation: ceramics, stone rings, and bronzes. Survey of the surrounding area includes possible smelting and stone ring production sites. Much remains to be learned about the Nyaung-gan cemetery, but it is already clear that the finds from the site contribute greatly to the knowledge of Myanmar prehistory. Keywords: Burma, Myanmar, prehistory, Pyu, stone rings, Southeast Asia. moore and pauk . bronze age cemetery near mandalay 47" ... Summary: "Nyaung-gan adds a new dimension to the prehistory of Myanmar. Despite many differences between Pyu sites and their repertory of finds, the presence of Nyaung-gan type bronzes at Halin suggests the possibility of an earlier occupation of some Pyu sites. The cemetery location is also significant, both its siting on the crater and adjacent to the rich copper deposits on the opposite bank of the Chindwin. The area's low rainfall and access to navigable waterways links it to other sites in the central zone, Pyu, and Pagan. The discoveries at Nyaung-gan extend into prehistory a long-term pattern of occupation, technological developments, and the beginnings of urbanism within the most arid region of the country. Further research may also bear out evidence of continuity in mortuary practices between Pyu and earlier periods, such as the use of inhumation and urn burials. The possibility of Bronze Age burials at Pyu sites also deserves further investigation."
Author/creator: Elizabeth Moore and Pauk Pauk
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Asian Perspectives: Journal of Archaeology for Asia & the Pacific, Vol. 40 issue 1 (Spring 2001) pp. 35-47
Format/size: pdf (155K)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003

Title: Ancient Myanmar Cities
Date of publication: 1993
Description/subject: Contents: (1) Ancient Beikthano City, by U Aung Thaw; (2) Ancient Hanlin City, by U Myint Aung; (3) Ancient Srikhetra, by U Sein Maung Oo; (4) Excavation of ancient Tagaung city, by U Than Swe; (5) New supporting evidence of Pyu culture, by U Aung Thaw..... Famous Myanmar archaeologists and research officers describe Pyu cities. "Ancient Beikthano City" was an excavation report written by U Aung Thaw, retired Director - General of Dept. of Archaeology. It describes Beikthano (Vishnu) as being near Taungdwingyi in Magwe Division, and flourished from about 1st century A.D until it was destroyed in the 5th century A.D. It was a very important early Pyu city. "Ancient Hanlin City", by U Myint Aung, research officer, Dept of Archaeology. Hanlin was a Pyu city 10 miles from Wetlet in Shwebo District, Mandalay Division. Hanlin city flourished between the 4th and 9th century A.D. Their coins had symbols and they are were literate. Buddhism developed early in Hanlin, but image worship was not evident. Hanlin city was burnt and destroyed in 9th century A.D. "Ancient Srikshetra", by U Sein Maung Oo, is an excavation report. The author led the excavation team and presents details about Srikshetra. Srikshetra was also an ancient Pyu city located just five miles southeast of Pyay (Prome). It flourished between the 5th and 10th centuries. Srikshetra shows association and contact with South India. The earliest inscriptions in Myanmar found thus far are at Srikshetra. Two gold plates were found in a villager, Maung Kan's field, and twenty gold leaves were discovered in a mound in Khin Ba's field. Buddhism flourished and image - worship developed. In the 10th century Srikshetra fell, to be replaced by the Burman state of Bagan in 11th Century. "Excavation of Ancient Tagaung City", by U Than Swe , research officer, is an excavation report of ancient Tagaung city located 127 miles north of Mandalay on the left bank of the Ayeyawady River. The excavation yielded evidence that Tagaung rose to become an important fortified city during Anawrahta's reign in the early Bagan period..."New Evidence of Early Pyu Culture", by U Aung Thaw is a report about new inscriptions from Hanlin and Srikshetra..... Subject Terms: 1. Archaeological Survey 2. Beikthano (Ancient Pyu city) - History 3. Culture - Pyu 4. Hanlin - Ancient Pyu City - history 5. Myanmar - history - early period 6. Pyu Civilization 7. Srikshetra- ancient Pyu city - history 5th - 10th century 8. Takaung- ancient Myanmar city - history.....(This document was placed on the Washington University site in 8 sections. OBL has consolidated these sections into an 8.7MB file. The original sections with the Washington.edu URLs are given as here Alternate URLs)
Author/creator: U Than Shwe, U Sein Maung Oo, U Aung Thaw, U Myint Aung
Language: Burmese/ ျမန္မာဘာသာ; (Metadata: English, Burmese)
Source/publisher: Ministry of Information, News and Periodicals Enterprise
Format/size: pdf (8.7MB-consolidated text)
Alternate URLs: http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001a.pdf (2.6MB)
http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001b.pdf (2MB)
http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001c.pdf (2.5MB)
http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001d.pdf (2MB)
http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001e.pdf (3.6MB)
http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001f.pdf (1.8MB)
http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001g.pdf (2.3MB)
http://www.lib.washington.edu/myanmar/pdfs/AR0001h.pdf (2MB)
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003

Title: Ancient Myanmar Cities - Pyu Era
Date of publication: 1993
Description/subject: Contents: (1) Ancient Beikthano City, by U Aung Thaw...(2) Ancient Hanlin City, by U Myint Aung...(3) Ancient Srikhetra, by U Sein Maung Oo...(4) Excavation of ancient Tagaung city, by U Than Swe...(5) New supporting evidence of Pyu culture, by U Aung Thaw
Author/creator: U Aung Thaw, U Myint Aung, U Sein Maung Oo, U Than Swe
Language: English
Source/publisher: Ministry of Information, News and Periodicals Enterprise via Washington University
Format/size: pdf (2.6MB)
Date of entry/update: 11 October 2014

Title: Ancient Beikthano City: An Historical View
Date of publication: 1966
Description/subject: "Critiques the excavations of Beikthano or Vishnu city. In this paper the author reviews contemporary Chinese records and finds that the Pyu were Tibeto - Burman and that their civilization developed in the 1st century AD. The 2nd Pyu dynasty had its centre in Srikshetra. It is a useful paper to read in the context of excavation reports by U Aung Thaw."
Author/creator: Ba Shin
Language: English
Source/publisher: Washington University
Format/size: pdf (1.5MB-combined version; 3.92MB-section 1a; 3.65MB-section 1b)
Alternate URLs: http://www.lib.washington.edu/SouthEastAsia/myanmar/pdfs/BS0001a.pdf
Date of entry/update: 11 October 2014