Friday, November 27, 2009

Laotian in origin

Prasat Muang Thi resides in the grounds of a pagoda in Surin province
En route during my few days in Isaan, Northeast Thailand, we came across a few prasats (ancient stone temples) that weren't specifically Khmer in origin. Take Prasat Muang Thi for example. Thirty minutes after we left Surin and just off the main road, in the grounds of a pagoda and next to a boisterous playground of schoolchildren, are the five stupa-like towers of Muang Thi, which are much more influenced by Laotian art than Khmer. There would've originally been five brick and mortar towers, now only three remain. The main tower in the center has been altered over time, most likely in the 18th century. Muang Thi isn't Khmer but made a pleasant diversion for a few minutes on our relentless hunt for Khmer prasats in Isaan.
The three remaining stupa towers of Prasat Muang Thi
The towers at Muang Thi stand right up against the vihara of the local wat

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Anonymous DAMIAN said...

Hi, Andy
2 or 3 posts ago I read you were about to travel to Laos, so maybe this is the right occasion to ask you - do you know by chance how is NEAK TA called in Laos? I couldn't find a clue to it. I traveled to Northern Laos some years ago and got the impression that animist cults there were even stronger than in Cambodia. One of the first things I've learned there (from the boatman who took me to visit the Pak Ou caverns) was, never clasp your hands on approaching somebody else's home, otherwise you'll end up attracting a lot of wandering spirits around the place. Thanks for your assistance and congrats for your lively and very interesting blog. - Damian

November 27, 2009 at 5:51 AM  
Blogger Andy Brouwer said...

I am asking a friend in Laos to get the name for me. If not I will ask when I go there myself. I leave tomorrow morning.
Regards, Andy

November 27, 2009 at 9:35 AM  
Blogger Andy Brouwer said...

my pal in Laos came through with Phi = Spirit or Ghost, in Laos. They would call Neak Ta, Phi.

November 27, 2009 at 9:46 AM  
Anonymous DAMIAN said...

Thank you, very much, for your solicitude. "Phi" sounds intriguing, I'll search more. Though I'm not a soccer fan, I wish all the luck to the Cambodian team. Have a very nice trip to Laos.
All the best, Damian

November 27, 2009 at 10:24 AM  

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