JOURNAL OF MY TOUR BY JEEP OF THAILAND, CAMBODIA AND VIETNAM

NOVEMBER, 1956 , page 21

The road continues to the North and bifurcates around the square structure of the Bayon, a blue-gray temple which has been called the summum of Khmer culture.
16 Towers carry the 64 faces of a mysterious smiling figure which is still clearly visible now even though the seems between the 20 or more building blocks constituting the heads -which are about 3 meters high - are opening wider and wider.


People do not concur on whose face it represents, but one of the suppositions

is that it is that of the King-Builder himself, Jayavarman VII.

The labyrinth of corridors and passages, galleries, porticoes, stairways, heads and columns gives clear evidence of the King's wishes to compress as much as possible in the smallest area. Undoubtedly, he found it necessary during the actual construction, to continuously modify and add, so the result is an excess of stone and - especially when the structure was just recovered from the suffocating jungle - an almost suppressive romantic mood.


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