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Bayon, one of the most majestic temple in Angkor...
It seems those faces smile to each other...

As usual, a bit of history:

Following my previous post: In the l860s France established a protectorate over Cambodia, and ruled benignly for ninety years. The French were thrilled to “ discover” Yasodharapura, and brought the ruins to the attention of the world. French scholars also deciphered the inscriptions, dated the temples and rediscovered the names and sequence of forgotten Angkorean kings. The French also restored the temples, and built roads that made them accessible to tourists.

Under King Norodom Sihanouk, Cambodia gained its independence in l953. For seventeen years, Cambodia was at peace, and French archaeologists, aided by Khmer, continued their work at Yasodharapura. The civil war of l970-1975 and the ruinous Khmer Rouge era that followed meant that no work was done at Angkor. Serious restorations resumed in the late l980s. Today, missions from France, Italy, Japan and other countries are busy at Angkor, which has become a popular tourist site, visited each year by several hundred thousand people.

Its “legacy” consists of the extraordinary artistic and engineering talents that the ruins reveal. These talents are on view today in Cambodian classical dance and among the openhearted, inventive and resilient people who struggle to make ends meet in their poor, overcrowded country, while bearing witness to their wondrous past.

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Additional Photos by Vincent Tiberghien (tibervince) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 106 W: 16 N: 141] (781)
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