Archaeological Excavations at Prasat Khna Temple — February-March 2020
The Prasat Khna Temple is localised in the Preah Vihear Province, Choam Ksant District (Krala Peas village, Preng tum municipality). The epigraphical resources clearly show the high holiness of this sanctuary in the Ancient Cambodia. The sanctuary was then named Janapada.
The site was dedicated to Vişṇu and was probably settled during the pre-Angkorian period (according to Parmentier 1939). The site supplied five inscriptions already published, but has never been dug. One of these inscriptions suggests that a great priest involved in the Devarāja rite for the royal consecration of the first angkorian king and its successors (802 A.D.), was settled in the sanctuary.
The Yaśodharāśrama project, which is an archaeological multiyear program (EFEO, French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, University of Toronto, University Mahidol, ERC DHARMA, APSARA and Cambodian Ministry of Culture and Fine arts), aims to study the Yaśodharāśrama (“monasteries of Yaśovarman”). These structures are the first royal institutions dsitributed on the Angkorian territory. They were stage lodges, spiritual retreat places and teaching locations.
The Prasat Khna Archaeological Campaign seek to understand the topographical organisation of the sanctuary and to ascertain the settlement of a āśrama by Yaśovarman Ist on this site. The topographical map realised in 2019 and 2020 show that the sanctuary was wider than the perennial structures seemed indicate.