"The Kingdom of Sri Ksetra (Burmese: […]; lit., "Field of Fortune" or "Field of Glory") was the premier Pyu city-state between the 7th and 9th centuries CE. The city-state was an important polity, according to Burmese chronicles, which claim that the "kingdom" existed between 483 BCE and 94 CE. The current Burmese calendar was launched at Sri Ksetra on 22 March 638.
Sri Ksetra was an important entrepôt between China and India. Excavations at Sri Ksetra have yielded the most extensive remains of Theravada Buddhism of the Pyu realm. Religious art suggests several distinct occupations with earlier influences stemming from Southeast India and later influences from Southwest India while 9th century influences include those from the Nanzhao Kingdom. The state became part of the Pagan Empire in the 1050s.
Sri Ksetra is the largest Pyu site discovered thus far. (Only Beikthano and Sri Ksetra have been extensively excavated. Other important Pyu cities as Maingmaw and Binnaka could yield more artifacts with more extensive excavations.) It occupied a larger area than that of the 11th century Pagan or 19th century Mandalay. Only the southern half of the city was taken up by the palace, monasteries and houses; the entire northern half consisted of rice fields. Together with the moats and walls, this arrangement ensured that the city could withstand a long siege by enemies.
[…] Religious art suggests several distinct occupations with earlier influences stemming from Southeast India and later influences from Southwest India while 9th century influences include those from the Nanzhao Kingdom. Much of the Chinese account of the Pyu states was through Sri Ksetra. Chinese pilgrims Xuanzang in 648 and Yijing in 675 mentioned Sri Ksetra in their accounts of Buddhist kingdoms of Southeast Asia. The Tang histories mention the arrival at the court of an embassy from the Pyu capital in 801."
"The name "Pyi" means "country" in Burmese, and refers to the ruins of the Pyu capital of Sri Ksetra (Burmese: […], lit. "City of Splendour" in Sanskrit), which is located 8 km (5.0 mi) to the southeast of modern Pyay and is in the village of Hmawa [www.fallingrain.com/world/BM/09/Hmawza.html - tmciolek].
Much debate surrounds the construction of Sri Ksetra. Maung Htin Aung suggests that Pyu might have been founded in 78 CE, based on the Sanskrit / Pyu Era. D.G.E. Hall and Gordon Luce however claim that civilisation of the Irrawaddy Valley could not have been possible before the 4th century, thus, attributing the founding of Sri Ksetra to 638, from which the current Burmese Kawza Era begins.
Sri Ksetra was the capital of the Pyu dynasty of Vikrama. The city was circular with walls enclosing an around of 46 km2 (18 sq mi), making it the largest walled city in Southeast Asia during its peak. The city contained both housing and also farms, as evident from the remains of water ways and tanks which have been discovered. The Chinese pilgrims Xuanzang and I Ching mentioned about Sri Ksetra in their mid-7th century accounts. It is not known when precisely the Pyus abandoned Sri Ksetra and moved northward. It is speculated that their decline was due to the growth of the Irrawaddy river delta, cutting it off from coastal trade, and also from Mon and later Tai Shan incursions. Burmese chronicles state that when Anawrahta invaded the southern parts of modern day Myanmar in 1057, he ordered the ruins of Sri Ksetra to be destroyed to prevent rebels from sheltering.
Lat 18.816667, Long 95.216667"
Input by: tmciolek, Sep 21, 2012
Final data (and their sources)
Last updated: 6 Jan 2013
Lat/Long coordinates' accuracy:
The monastery in question is assumed to be situated actually no farther than 200 m from the point defined by the coordinates below.
General location of the Sri Ksetra-1 monastery, MM.
Lat 18.7998 Long 95.2958
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (http://www.fallingrain.com), 2012.
Google Map link:
1. Monastery's name
- Sri Ksetra-1 monastery - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Ksetra_Kingdom
2. Monastery's modern country & province
- Myanmar: Bago Division
3. Monastery's alternative/historical names
- Hmawza monastery - (Groslier (1971:56)
4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates
- Approx., Lat 18.7998 Long 95.2958 - based on the visual identification of the Sri Ksetra site no. 1 in satellite imagery, maps.google.com - tmciolek, 21 Sep 2012.
- Village Hmawa/Hmawza is approx. Lat 18.8167 Long 95.3000 - http://www.fallingrain.com/world/BM/09/Hmawza.html
5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries
- Sri Ksetra-2 monastery
6. Modern name of the known nearest city, town, or village
7. The settlement's alternative/historical names
- Pye - http://www.fallingrain.com/world/BM/16/Pyay.html
- Prome - http://www.fallingrain.com/world/BM/16/Pyay.html
- Pyit - http://www.fallingrain.com/world/BM/16/Pyay.html
- Pyei - http://www.fallingrain.com/world/BM/16/Pyay.html
8. The settlement's coordinates
- Approx., Lat 18.816667, Long 95.216667 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyay
- Approx., Lat 18.8167 Long 95.2167 - http://www.fallingrain.com/world/BM/16/Pyay.html
9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition
- Theravada - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Ksetra_Kingdom
10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition
- [missing data]
- Built after 638 AD, from which the current Burmese Kawza Era begins - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyay
- MBM chrono-tag 0633-66p 0667-99p 0700-32p - tmciolek 06 Jan 2013
- 0633-66p 0667-99p 0700-32p dated-ex
- Possibly active during Xuanzang's visit in 648 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Ksetra_Kingdom
- Possibly active during Yijing's visit in 675 - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Ksetra_Kingdom
- MBM chrono-tag 0633-66p 0667-99p - tmciolek 06 Jan 2013
- [missing data]
14. Details of contacts with other monasteries
- 7th c. CE? ruins of a stupa at Hmawza near Prome [Note, the reference may instead pertain to Sri Ksetra-2 monastery - tmc, 6 Jan 2013]. The site strongly influenced by the art of Udayagiri - Groslier (1971:56)
15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery
- Architecture, archaeology
16. Additional notes
- [missing data] (incl. details of the size of the monastic population)
17. Corrections & addenda to this page were kindly provided by
- [missing data]
18. Available Printed Literature
- [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 1]
- [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 2]
- [bibliographical details of the Book/Article 3]
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