Prambanan Temple

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We arrived at the Prambanan temple mid-afternoon, just at the wrong time for taking photos with the sun in the wrong place! Prambanan is a 9th century Hindu temple built about the same time as the Buddhist temple at nearby Borobudur.

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When the British invaded Java (1811-1816), Stamford Raffles sent his surveyor around the country to report on the land now under his control.  With the help of some locals, Colin MacKenzie rediscovered Prambanan in 1811. Much of this temple complex had been destroyed and extensive renovation continues to this day. You can see piles of stone blocks which remain to be fitted together in the most difficult jigsaw puzzle in the world! They do not rebuild a shrine unless at least 75% of the original masonry has been found. The detailed carving on these buildings is very fine indeed, so this whole complex must have been truely spectacular back in the 9th century, and the Mataram Kingdom must have been very powerful indeed.

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© Helen Gray 2019