Sri Ksetra

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Sri Ksetra


a state of the Pyu people of Burma that existed until the 830’s. Sri Ksetra, which is first mentioned in Chinese sources of the fourth century A.D., occupied most of the Irra-waddy River valley and in the south bordered the Mon cities; its first capital was the city of Tarekitara, or Sri Ksetra. The state reached its peak under the Vikrama dynasty, which ruled in the seventh and eighth centuries. Sri Ksetra maintained extensive commercial and cultural relations with India and China. The dominant religion was Buddhism.

In the eighth century, Sri Ksetra became a dependency of the state of Nan Chao, and its capital was moved north to the city of Khalin. In 832, according to the Chinese chronicles of the T’ang Dynasty, the troops of Nan Chao overran and leveled the Pyu capital; the surviving Pyu became slaves. The Pyu, a people of the Tibeto-Burmese group, subsequently were assimilated by the Burmese; they are last mentioned between the 11th and 13th centuries as one of the peoples inhabiting the Pagan state.

Sri Ksetra considerably influenced the development of later Burmese states (particularly the Pagan state), primarily in the area of Buddhist ideology and culture.


Mozheiko, I. V. 5,000 khramov na beregu Iravadi. Moscow, 1967.
Mozheiko. I. V., and A. N. Uzianov. Istoriia Birmy. Moscow, 1973.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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This article discusses evidence on crucial transitions from the Late Iron Age to early urbanism at Sri Ksetra and Beikthano in Myanmar.
Major inscriptions on stone in the Pyu language survive at Sri Ksetra, Halin, near Pinle (Hmainmaw), and Bagan.
The Pyu shared a form of urbanism on a range of scales--from vast walled spaces with one side enclosed by a water tank (as at Sri Ksetra and Beikthano), or a tank just outside the walls (as at Halin, Pinle and Wadi); a homogeneous form of irrigation technology integrated into these settlements with adaptations to suit each specific environment; a high-grade silver coinage with a srivatsa symbol on one side and either a rising sun or a bhadhrapitha symbol on the other.
By the time the first durable structures survived at Beikthano and Sri Ksetra (c.
These two dated burial terraces of Sri Ksetra, in spite of the problems of the associations of their AMS dates, represent a very important cultural benchmark.
Another important elaboration of Pyu funerary urn culture--this time for the elite--took place at Sri Ksetra around the middle of the first millennium, with the creation of large urns formed out of a stone block, externally shaped into a soberly decorated cylindrical stone jar with flat base (fig.
The inscribed stone urns of Sri Ksetra open up areas for epigraphic and historical research which lie beyond the scope of this article.
Two C14 dates are currently available for burial terraces at Sri Ksetra: HMA47 and 53, locations shown on fig.
In spite of the evidence of technical influences from India in the use of brick of Asokan norms, ceramic techniques and possibly iron technology, none of these early monuments at Beikthano or Sri Ksetra reveals traces of Indie religious influences, unless the practice of cremation burial itself is judged to be one.
Stargardt outlines key developments at Sri Ksetra during the phase; Murphy argues for a proto-Dvaravati period in the fourth to fifth centuries; Higham documents social stratification in the Mun River Valley at this time; and both Higham and Heng argue that the pon of later Pre-Angkorian inscriptions descended from Late Iron Age elites.
Janice Stargardt's article, 'From the Iron Age to early cities at Sri Ksetra and Beikthano, Myanmar', provides new archaeological evidence for transitions from prehistory in the late first millennium BCE to proto-urban and fully urban development at Sri Ksetra and Beikthano in the first millennium CE.
Mon site at Sri Ksetra. At the eleventh-twelfth century Burman capital of Pagan, four types of arch are found.

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