My Son holy land – discover Champa architecture in Vietnam culture


In 1999, at the 23rd session, the My Son holy land of Vietnam has been the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO recognize World Cultural Heritage because of this legacy is a prime example of the trade cultural change and is the only evidence of civilization in Asia have disappeared.

My Son holy land - discover Champa architecture in Vietnam culture


My Son holy land- belong Duy Phu Commune, Duy Xuyen district, Quang Nam province, distance Da Nang city 69km, distance Hoi An town 42 km and Tra Kieu ancient city 30km.

My Son is a combination of many temples of the kingdom of Champa, in a small valley about 2km in diameter, surrounded by mountains, only a single entrance is located between two hills and a stream barrier in front of the line into the valley like a trench depth, hindering those who wish to enter the shrine.

My Son was the sacrifice of the Champa dynasty, and is home to the tombs of the Champa kings or princes. My Son is one of the central temple of Hinduism in Southeast Asia.

My Son holy land - discover Champa architecture in Vietnam culture

According to the document, the My Son began to be built in the fourth century. For centuries this holy place is adding small and large towers have become relics of the Champa culture in Vietnam. In that Bhadravarman (Pham Ho Dat) ruled from 381-413 is the first king of Champa had built here a church to worship the Linga and Shiva, the god of divine, guardian of the Cham people. Church architecture greatly influenced by Hinduism both in architecture and culture. But by the end of VI century the temple was destroyed by fire. At the beginning of VII century, kings, is Sambhavarman (Pham Phan Chi), ruled from 577 to 629 had to rebuild the temples of brick. Since then the dynasty after another restore and maintain the new build several magnificent temples, more glorious. Especially under the reign Vikrantavarman Vikrantavarman I and II to build more temples to a larger scale.

The towers and tombs here are mainly from the seventh century to the fourteenth century, but the excavations showed that the Cham kings were buried here from the fourth century. Total number of buildings have come on 70 units. Obviously, My Son is the center of religious and cultural state of Champa, as capital of the country is Tra Kieu.

My Son holy land - discover Champa architecture in Vietnam culture

Historically, My Son had been destroyed several times by the war. And until in 1470 when the kingdom of Champa end, My Son didn’t worship by Cham people, abandoned, forgotten for centuries in the jungle. To 1885, My Son was discovered by the French explorer man was Mr. C. Paris. Ten years after scientists began conducting luminescent studies of this relic. Over 40 years of the early twentieth century My Son has attracted the attention of many French scientists.

Through numerous searches and excavations, in 1904, two archaeologists H. Parmentier and Launet Finot has announced the most basic document of My Son. Through the work of H. Parmentier we know that more than 100 years of My Son ago where has 68 buildings and structures are at the Far East Institute for repairing restored several times. But in 1945,when war broke out, My Son was not only restored but also bombs destroyed. The biggest disaster for My Son droped bombs of the USA B52 aircraft in late 1969 had destroyed the entire the great stone temple tower 30 meters high. This is the only stone temple ruins of the Cham. My Son Epitaph said the temple was last renovated in 1224. The material collected is more likely that this is the first temple was built in IV century. The My Son leaving only 20 brick towers, but most were ruined.

My Son holy land - discover Champa architecture in Vietnam culture

Architecture, sculpture mainly influenced style of Hinduism. But Buddhist symbol is found in My Son. As Mahayana Buddhism (Mahayana) has become the religion of the Cham people in the X. century. Main materials to build the temples of My Son are brick, stone and sandstone. Architectural design of the towers were built in traditional style: The premises of  tower in the Quadrangle. 3-storey tower building, upstairs is a thumbnail of the layer below. Bottom layer represents the earthly world. Body tower symbolizes the spirit world. Top tier pyramid, the symbol Holy Meru mount, home of the Hindu gods. The whole tower is elaborately carved, delicate, soft lines, vivid. These are the birds, animals, flowers, the Apsara dancers the sun …

My Son holy land - discover Champa architecture in Vietnam culture

Although the number of towers is not much and badly damaged and although not huge, great period as Angkor (Cambodia), Pagan (Myanmar), and Borobudur (Indonesia) … but it is still the most important temples of the Cham and still have a very important position in the culture of Southeast Asian art. So, My Son deserves enrolled in the World Cultural Heritage.