Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tests confirm Angkor boat made in 1207 AD

Tests confirm Angkor boat made in 1207 AD

Officials inspect an ancient longboat in April after it was uncovered at a Angkor Thom district construction site. Photo supplied
Officials inspect an ancient longboat in April after it was uncovered at a Angkor Thom district construction site. Photo supplied

Tests confirm Angkor boat made in 1207 AD

A boat unearthed at a construction site in Siem Reap’s Angkor Thom district in April was made in 1207 AD, according to carbon dating results announced on Friday.

The 809-year-old vessel was carved from a single tree trunk during the reign of King Jayavarman VII.

Apsara Authority spokesman Long Kosal said the results, produced by a radio carbon dating lab in New Zealand, were announced at the biannual meeting of the International Coordinating Committee for Angkor.

“I believe this is the oldest boat that has been found so far,” Kosal said.

“Apsara believes this will be another great piece of information, which will enlighten us to understand how the Khmer people were using the boat.

“This finding will help to give us more shape to the history of Cambodia; there are many things we do not yet know about the reign of Jayavarman VII.”

Archaeologist Chen Chanratana said the find showed a continuity of boat-building stretching back hundreds of years.

“Before, we could see the image of the boat carved on the wall of the temple, but now we can see the actual boat that remains,” Chanratana said.

The vessel, currently submerged in a baray at Angkor Wat, is set to be displayed for tourists – either in a museum or as part of a travelling exhibition, but Kosal stressed it was crucial the boat was “wholly preserved”.

MOST VIEWED

  • Breaking: US House passes 'Cambodia Democracy Act'

    The US House of Representatives in Washington, DC, on Monday, passed the “HR 526 Cambodia Democracy Act”, also known as the Cambodia Democracy Act of 2019. If signed off by the president, the bill will allow two major sets of action to be taken against high-ranking Cambodian

  • ‘Zero-dollar’ tours under fire

    Minister of Tourism Thong Khon has blamed “zero-dollar” tour operators for the decrease in foreign tourists to Angkor Archaeological Park in the first half of this year and has called for action against them. Angkor Archaeological Park received 1.24 million foreign visitors in the first half

  • Some jobs off limits to foreigners from August

    Beginning from the second week of August, foreigners will be banned from driving taxis and tuk-tuks, as well as being motorcycle delivery drivers, street food vendors, hairdressers and product distributors among other lower-income jobs. Some white-collar jobs such as the head of human resources will

  • Chinese-owned shops are on the rise in central Phnom Penh

    Informal businesses owned by Chinese nationals are on the rise in central Phnom Penh, especially in Tonle Bassac commune, surrounding Koh Pich. Such businesses have sprung up notably in Central Market, Orussey Market, Sovanna Shopping Mall, Rattana Plaza, as well as Kakab commune across from