The Medieval World, C. 400–1300

India and Southeast Asia

What is the Ananda temple?

The Ananda temple is the most famous and spiritually significant Buddhist shrine in Burma and was built in the early twelfth century by the leader Kyanzitta during the Pagan Period, which lasted from the eleventh to fourteenth centuries. The temple is notable for its cruciform shape and tall central spire, which is 165 feet high. The temple is decorated with additional small spires, spikes, and four large sculptures of the Buddha, each reaching a height of approximately thirty-five feet. The lavish ornamental architecture of the Ananda temple reflects the flourishing of Buddhism in Burma at the time of its construction.


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