Khmer Buddhist and Hindu Antiques
Angkor, the lost capital of Kambuja (Cambodia) was rediscovered by the French naturalist Henri Mouhot in 1860. only about 150 years ago. Yet it has revealed culture, art and architecture that is unparalleled in South East Asia. Following the fall of Kambuja to the Siamese in 1431 AD, the splendor of the capital was lost to the jungle for the next four centuries. As the vegetation took grip on these magnificent buildings, their roots failed to shake the robust structures built through the masonry of ancient architects and artisans. Lost to man, snakes took shelter and the wild animals roamed claiming the territory that the humans took from them. Gods and nature mingled once again hidden from the greed and breed of the human race.  

Upon its re-discovery, the world was stunned by the treasures that it  revealed. Here was a fusion of two most ancient religions, Hinduism and Buddhism, with no signs of conflict between the two. Vishnu and Buddha mingled sometimes as one, Shiva’s serpent (Naga) guarded the Buddha. Uma shared the platform with Buddha and Vishnu, while Linga adored the temple with Buddha. The mythology of Hindus adapted to Buddha’s philosophy of life was in harmony.

Having remained undisturbed for generations,  now a prolific number of magnificent work of art and sculpture from Angkor started emerging.  As these arefacts from the Khmer state started to reach the western world. If all these artifacts were to be real how did such a large number of objects survive? Or all these fake! the invention man’s greed.

ANKOR 2Experts may use the look and feel method for authenticity but they too are not infallible. Recalling that these bronzes were smelted and cast at over 1000 deg centigrade some tell tale marks should remain. The inner core of clay would be black showing evidence of firing and and a discerning buyer could employ Thermoluminescence (TL) dating but this is currently expensive, the current going rate being approximately £ 240.00 per object. If there is no remaining fired core clay within the bronze cast a metallurgist may help in dating. in order to understand this dilemma we have to go back nearly 2000 years in history to the advent of Christian era.

According to legend an Indian named Kaundinya on arrival to the larger Malay Peninsula, called Funan, formed an alliance with a Nagini princess, hence probably the early Naga influence on the state. For the next 1000 years Kambuja remained a Hindu state with a balance of Brahma, Shiva (Linga) and Vishnu as deities. Almost all art, bronzes and culture are centered on these deities from 600 to 1200 AD until Buddhism arrived in the 13th century. A remarkable peaceful union of the two religions followed with their sculpture encompassing the Hindu deities and Buddha.

ANKOR VISHNUDuring the reign of Jayavarman VII in the 12th century in Kambuja religious fervor set in fueling  an output of a large number of smaller bronzes. This new demand exerted pressure on the craftsmen, contributing to some poor quality bronzes. Good quality pieces became relatively less. By the time Khmer State starting to fade in the 15th century its treasures had got redistributed to rest of South Asia where they have survived into modern times. In addition, continuous wars and invasion by the neighboring states contributed to redistribution of Khmer treasures and artifacts in Siam, Laos, Thailand, Burma, and as far as Tibet, Malaysia and China.

Some of my early collections are from these countries. Even as late as early 18th century the hostility between Siam and Cambodia continued causing further outflow of Khmer art and sculpture into other parts of the region. It is not surprising to encounter such relatively large number of ancient Khmer artifacts in the west over the past century, given the high output of Khmer bronzes for over a millennium. Some may be fakes or reproduction of the past century but certainly some jewels in sculpture cannot be painted with the brush.

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Cambodian bronze Nataraja, H 7.5, ca 19th century,
Cambodian bronze Nataraja, H 7.5, ca 19th century,
£85.00
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Unidentified deity with right hand in Naga posture, Khmer/Thai bronze with inscriptions, ca pre 18th century, H 4.7
Unidentified deity with right hand in Naga posture, Khmer/Thai bronze with inscriptions, ca pre 18th century, H 4.7
£98.00
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Apsara or dancing Devata, Cambodian bronze, 5.9, ca  18th century
Apsara or dancing Devata, Cambodian bronze, 5.9, ca 18th century
£98.00
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Khmer bronze, Baphuon (Ca 1050-1066) Style. An emblem of Khmer sculpture, 3.36, Ca 17th - 18th century
Khmer bronze, Baphuon (Ca 1050-1066) Style. An emblem of Khmer sculpture, 3.36, Ca 17th - 18th century
£105.00
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19th century Khmer Bronze, King wielding sword and conch shell in other hand depicting a war mood
19th century Khmer Bronze, King wielding sword and conch shell in other hand depicting a war mood
£112.00
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Khmer bronze head of Buddha H 7.2" ca early to mid 20th century from Cambodia
Khmer bronze head of Buddha H 7.2" ca early to mid 20th century from Cambodia
£125.00
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Khmer Triad, H 6", Buddha, Vishnu, Uma, ca early to mid 20th century
Khmer Triad, H 6", Buddha, Vishnu, Uma, ca early to mid 20th century
£128.00
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Khmer bronze, Buddha on Muchalinda, H 5.8,  ca 12th to 13th century AD or a pre 1900 reproduction
Khmer bronze, Buddha on Muchalinda, H 5.8, ca 12th to 13th century AD or a pre 1900 reproduction
£130.00
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Hevajira, Khmer Bronze Hevajra with 8 heads and 16 arms, H 8.75 ca 19th century
Hevajira, Khmer Bronze Hevajra with 8 heads and 16 arms, H 8.75 ca 19th century
£135.00
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Vishnu riding on Gauruda, rare and antique Khmer bronze H  6.7" x W 5"
Vishnu riding on Gauruda, rare and antique Khmer bronze H 6.7" x W 5"
£225.00
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Buddha seated on Naga, Khmer period bronze H 3.95 X 5.9, ca 18th -19th century or possible earlier
Buddha seated on Naga, Khmer period bronze H 3.95 X 5.9, ca 18th -19th century or possible earlier
£230.00
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Vishnu, Seated on a double stented base floral leaf base, with 4 heads and 8 arms, H 6” W 4”, 19th century
Vishnu, Seated on a double stented base floral leaf base, with 4 heads and 8 arms, H 6” W 4”, 19th century
£256.00
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Hevajira, Khmer Bronze with 8 heads and 16 arms, H 8.75 inches,  ca 19th century
Hevajira, Khmer Bronze with 8 heads and 16 arms, H 8.75 inches, ca 19th century
£260.00
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Khmer Vishnu bronze, shown as handsome young man in royal clothes and with four arm, ca post 18th to 19th century
Khmer Vishnu bronze, shown as handsome young man in royal clothes and with four arm, ca post 18th to 19th century
£280.00
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Shiva and Parvati riding Nandi, South East Asian bronze, H 5.8" x L 4.00" 19th century or possibly ealier
Shiva and Parvati riding Nandi, South East Asian bronze, H 5.8" x L 4.00" 19th century or possibly ealier
£285.00
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Standing Khmer Ganesh bronze, 7.9. ca 12th century sytle, a later reproduction pre 1900
Standing Khmer Ganesh bronze, 7.9. ca 12th century sytle, a later reproduction pre 1900
£320.00
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Khmer Vishnu bronze in 3-step dancing position and 11 heads, pre-BuddhIst, Jayavarman II era, ca 800 AD, H 9.4,
Khmer Vishnu bronze in 3-step dancing position and 11 heads, pre-BuddhIst, Jayavarman II era, ca 800 AD, H 9.4,
£325.00
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Kneeling crowned Ganesh, Angkor Vat, bronze H 6.9, ca 800 - 1200 AD style
Kneeling crowned Ganesh, Angkor Vat, bronze H 6.9, ca 800 - 1200 AD style
£380.00
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A fine Khmer Triad bronze, 3.95 X 2.5, 12th -14th century, Buddha flanked on either side by Vishnu and Uma.
A fine Khmer Triad bronze, 3.95 X 2.5, 12th -14th century, Buddha flanked on either side by Vishnu and Uma.
£380.00
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Four armed crowned Ganesh, Khmer bronze  from Angkor Vat  Pre-Buddhist period H 5.2 ca 800-1200 AD or later
Four armed crowned Ganesh, Khmer bronze from Angkor Vat Pre-Buddhist period H 5.2 ca 800-1200 AD or later
£390.00
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Khmer standing Buddha with his palms outstretched in abhaya mudra position while standing on a double lotus square base. The details of his jewellery around his neck and waist are finely cast, 12th to 14th century Buddha, bronz, H 12,
Khmer standing Buddha with his palms outstretched in abhaya mudra position while standing on a double lotus square base. The details of his jewellery around his neck and waist are finely cast, 12th to 14th century Buddha, bronz, H 12,
£429.00
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Khmer bronze of Vishnu 'Trivikrama' taking 3 steps to measure the universe, 12th-14th century style
Khmer bronze of Vishnu 'Trivikrama' taking 3 steps to measure the universe, 12th-14th century style
£440.00
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Apsara, the dancing celestial nymph, the hall mark of Angkor Vat culture, bronze, H 12.7, ca 17th century or earlier
Apsara, the dancing celestial nymph, the hall mark of Angkor Vat culture, bronze, H 12.7, ca 17th century or earlier
£495.00
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Khmer Triad, Buddha protected by Naga and Flanked by Vishnu & Lakshmi, Home shrine alter piece, 2.6" x 2.5" ,
Khmer Triad, Buddha protected by Naga and Flanked by Vishnu & Lakshmi, Home shrine alter piece, 2.6" x 2.5" ,
£580.00
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Khmer bronze of Apsara, the dancing celestial nymph, the hall mark of Angkor Vat culture, bronze, H 12.7, ca 19h century or probably earlier
Khmer bronze of Apsara, the dancing celestial nymph, the hall mark of Angkor Vat culture, bronze, H 12.7, ca 19h century or probably earlier
£595.00
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Large bronze Cambodian crowned  Ayodhya Buddha head H 15 stand 3.5,  ca 19th or early 20th century
Large bronze Cambodian crowned Ayodhya Buddha head H 15 stand 3.5, ca 19th or early 20th century
£620.00
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Museum quality Khmer Vishnu shrine, bronze, 4.75 X 2.25 inches ca post 1400 AD
Museum quality Khmer Vishnu shrine, bronze, 4.75 X 2.25 inches ca post 1400 AD
£675.00
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Large museum quality Khmer bronze of seated Vishnu with 9 crowned heads ca 19th  century or  earlier, H 11.7
Large museum quality Khmer bronze of seated Vishnu with 9 crowned heads ca 19th century or earlier, H 11.7
£720.00
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Khmer bronze, Uma, H 8.75 X B 4.2, ca 800- 1200 AD
Khmer bronze, Uma, H 8.75 X B 4.2, ca 800- 1200 AD
£795.00
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Khmer periods mostly portrayed Hindu deity Vishnu, H 8.7 X W 5.0 8th -12th century AD
Khmer periods mostly portrayed Hindu deity Vishnu, H 8.7 X W 5.0 8th -12th century AD
£795.00
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Khmer worship of Linga (Siva-linga) , bronze,  H 3.95 X 2.25, post 1400 AD,
Khmer worship of Linga (Siva-linga) , bronze, H 3.95 X 2.25, post 1400 AD,
£880.00
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A  rare museum piece bronze of Khmer Triad with Buddha protected by Muchalinda,  H 12" x 7"
A rare museum piece bronze of Khmer Triad with Buddha protected by Muchalinda, H 12" x 7"
£950.00
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Fragment ornamented torso of  Shiva with crown from Phnom Trap, Beanteai Srei Style, rare Cambodian bronze, 8.3" tall with stand, ca 13tth - 14th century
Fragment ornamented torso of Shiva with crown from Phnom Trap, Beanteai Srei Style, rare Cambodian bronze, 8.3" tall with stand, ca 13tth - 14th century
£1,900.00
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Large Khmer bronze of standing 8-arm and 5-heads Bramah H 25  ca 18 - 19th century
Large Khmer bronze of standing 8-arm and 5-heads Bramah H 25 ca 18 - 19th century
£2,800.00
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Nandi, the Sacred Bull and vehicle of Shiva, Lopburi Khmer bronze, 11th - 12th century
Nandi, the Sacred Bull and vehicle of Shiva, Lopburi Khmer bronze, 11th - 12th century
£2,995.00
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