ANCIENT STATUE UNCOVERED AT ANGKOR WAT TEMPLE IN CAMBODIA
Archaeologists working at the Angkor Wat temple in Cambodia have uncovered a large statue that is thought to go back to during the latter half of the 12th century.
SIX FOOT STATUE MAY HAVE BEEN GUARDIAN OF ENTRANCE TO ANCIENT HOSPITAL
The statue is in the form of a human figure, in sandstone, and it stands at 6 feet 5 inches tall.
Archaeologists believe that the statue perhaps served as a guardian to the entrance of what once was an ancient hospital.
The find was said to be like something that would happen in a movie.
Angkor Wat is situated in the southeast of Asia, and it is one of the most popular destinations for tourists.
The complex was said to have been constructed over different periods of time during the Khmer empire, which ran from the 9th to 15th centuries.
The temple attracts around 2.5 million visitors.
STATUE IS THE MOST IMPORTANT FIND IN RECENT YEARS
The majority of the most valuable items from the temple was looted, and this is one of the main reasons why experts believe that the find is extraordinary.
The uncovering of the statue led to researchers claiming that the statue was the most important find in Angkor during recent years.
Archaeologists said that the statue had been buried around 40cm under the ground and it was uncovered when they were excavating the site of a hospital that had been built when King Jayavarman VII reigned.
This was between 1181 and 1220.
The king was well known for being involved in social programs, and the hospital was said to have been one of the most prominent of his projects.
The legs and the arms of the statue had been broken.
However, the head and body engravings are visible.
Researchers are not hoping that other objects might be uncovered from the site and they would give the researchers more information about the people that lived during that time, along with their lifestyles.
Rethy Chhem, a historian, said that the hospital was among four that had been constructed in the region.
However, none of them had been excavated properly.
Each of the hospitals had statues of divinities; the most important of them was the Medicine Buddha statute.
Chhem said that if they had uncovered the Buddha they would have hit gold.
Many of the statues of Buddha had been destroyed during the reign of Jayavarman, and this was because he wanted to bring back Brahmanism.
Those that were not damaged had been looted.
However, it is thought that perhaps some of the statues were buried underground to preserve them.