Arikamedu is a famous archaeological site: it was an ancient port involved in the so-called Indo-Roman trade from the 3rd c. BCE until the 3rd c. CE, with a continuity up to the medieval period. Even if the evidence of trade with Southeast Asia is scarce for the ancient period, it increases considerably during the later period, attesting that Arikamedu was also part of the Asian network.
This year, the Yaśodharāśrama Research Program conducted excavations in Preah Vihear Province, Cambodia. The program is co-directed by Dominique Soutif (EFEO), Julia Estève (Mahidol), Chea Socheat (APSARA) and Edward Swenson (University of Toronto) and funded this year by the Excavations Commission of the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, the DHARMA project (ERC n° 809994) and the Hal Jackman foundation.
On August 27, 2019, Emmanuel Francis visited the Śaiva temple complex at Tiruvoṟṟiyūr திருவொற்றியூர் (13°09’39.60″N, 80°17’56.30″E; Figs. 1‒2), in the North of Chennai (ex-Madras). The temple-site is one of the richest in inscriptions in the region, with no less than 200 inscriptions.
On August 24 & 25, 2019, Emmanuel Francis (CNRS) and Babu N. Ramaswamy (EFEO, Pondicherry) surveyed the site of Uttiramērūr உத்திரமேரூர் or Uttaramērūr உத்தரமேரூர், focussing on the Vaikuṇṭhaperumāḷ temple (12°36’55.19″N, 79°45’29.63″E; Fig. 1), which, rather than a usual temple was in fact the seat of the local assembly (sabhā) of Brahmins during the Pallava and Cōḻa periods.