Bagan History and Info
Bagan is one of the significant sites of South East Asia. It was relatively unknown until recently, with its written history dating from the 9th century.
The societies of Old Bagan centred round their religion and kings, with temples built and maintained by farmers, small home industries, and artisans living in the surrounding Bagan area.
Inscriptions and paintings on the temple walls tell of donations to the temples and the reigning Kings, and the life stories of Buddha.
Old Bagan was an affluent society as shown by the number of Bagan Temples and Pagodas, 10,000 and more were built between the 11th and 13th centuries, but only about 2,200 remain today. Bagan Archaeological Zone was much larger, but it appears an extensive area, with temples and historical sites has been claimed by the Ayeyarwady River.
At the height of its power Bagan controlled most of what is known today as present day Burma, and some of the area today known as The Bagan Archaeological Zone, preserves this heritage.
Between the 12th-13th century Bagan had up to 2 million inhabitants, making it one of the most powerful empires in Asia.
After the 13th century so much fertile farm land had been taken over with temple building it led to a downturn in food production and wealth. With Bagan influence declining, invasions from the Mongol armies and Kublai Khan were the next historical influence on the area.