A Record of Cambodia

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A Record of Cambodia: The Land and Its People
Zhou Daguan

Translated, with an introduction and notes, by way of Peter Harris

Only one person has given us a first-hand account of the civilization of Angkor. This is the Chinese envoy, Zhou Daguan, who visited Angkor in 1296–97 and wrote A Record of Cambodia: The Land and Its People after his go back to China. To at the moment Zhou’s description of the royal palace, sacred homes, girls, buyers, slaves, hill human beings, animals, landscapes, and ordinary life stays a completely unique portrait of thirteenth-century Angkor at a time when its splendors were nonetheless intact.

Very little is known approximately Zhou Daguan. He was born on or near the southeastern coast of China, and changed into in all likelihood a younger man while he traveled to Cambodia via boat. After returning domestic he faded into obscurity, though he appears to have lived on for numerous decades. Much of the text of Zhou’s e book appears to have been misplaced over the centuries, however what remains nonetheless gives us a energetic feel of Zhou the person as well as of Angkor.

In this version, Peter Harris translates Zhou Daguan’s paintings without delay from Chinese to English to be published for the first time. Earlier English variations relied on a French translation achieved over a century in the past, and lost a lot of the sensation of the original as a end result. This entirely new rendering, which attracts on a number of available versions of the Zhou text, brings Zhou’s many observations vividly and as it should be lower back to existence. An advent and giant notes assist give an explanation for the textual content and positioned it inside the context of the instances.

“Peter Harris has given a brand new generation of readers a masterly model of Zhou’s timeless and captivating account that scholars of Cambodia are certain to take pleasure in and visitors to Angkor are certain to revel in.” David Chandler

Peter Harris is Senior Fellow on the Centre for Strategic Studies: New Zealand in Victoria University of Wellington.

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