in the Arakan Pagoda. It was the Palladium of the Arakanese, and was removed from Myohaung (in Arakan) to its present site in 1784, by Bodawpaya, after his conquest of Arakan.
Sagaing.aSagaing was the capital of Burma during the fourteenth and eighteenth centuries, and contains numerous ruins. The Tupayon Pagoda, built by Narapati, King of Ava, in the fifteenth century, has been repaired by Government, and twenty-six inscriptions have been collected in its vicinity, which will be housed in a shed specially constructed for the purpose.
Eighteen miles to the north of Sagaing, or nine miles from Mandalay, is situated Mingun, a village noted for its huge unfinished pagoda and its enormous bell, which is the second largest in the world. The pagoda covers an area of about 450 feet square, and its height is 162 feet, or one-third of the height originally intended. It was rent by the great earthquake of 1838. It was built by Bodawpaya (1781-1819), who spent more than twenty years on its construction. The bell was cast, in 1790, by the same king, to be dedicated to the pagoda. Its weight is about eighty tons, or one-third of that at Moscow, and fourteen times that of St. Paulas. Its supports were destroyed by the earthquake of 1838, and it rested on the ground till 1896, when it was raised, slung on an iron beam, and placed in a suitable shed, under the supervision of the Deputy Commissioner, Sagaing. Its principal dimensions are :a
Feet. Inches. External diameter at the lip 16 3
Internal diameter......10 0
Interior height ......11 6
Exterior height ......12 o
The thickness of metal varies from 6 to
Rangoon.aRangoon was called Dagon by the Talaings. In 1755, Alompra took Syriam after a protracted siege, and changed a Dagon a to a Yangon a (Rangoon) that is, a end of the war.a Ever since then it has risen in commercial importance, until now it is the third port in the Indian Empire.
There are few monuments of archaeological interest at Rangoon, as it was never the capital of a kingdom. The Shwe Dagon and Sule Pagodas are the most interesting. It is said that in the former were enshrined eight hairs of Gautama Buddha, in 588 B.C. The shrine has been renovated several times, till it has reached a height of 300 feet. According to local tradition, the latter marks the site of the temple of the Sule Nat (Spirit), who pointed out the hill where the
eight hairs of the Buddha should be deposited. Its characteristic feature is its octagonal shape, which appears to indicate Chinese influence. In China, where symbolism is much practised, the pa-kua or octagon, which is formed by joining the ends of the intersecting four straight lines indicating the cardinal and intermediate points, represents the earth, while a circle, indicating the sky, represents heaven.
Pegu.aPegu was the capital of the Talaing Kingdom from 573 to 781 a.d., and again from the thirteenth to the sixteenth centuries, and attained its height of grandeur and magnificence during the reigns of Tabin Shweti (1540-50) and Bayin Naung (1551-81), who were Burmese Kings of Toungoo.
Extensive ruins are to be seen on the east and west face of the town. The ruins at
TAW SEIN KO.
(Superintendent Archaeological Survey Department.)
Zaingganaing, on the west side, comprise those of the Kalyan! Thein, Mahazedi, Kyaikpun, and Shwekugyi. Between the Kalyiinl Thein and Mahazedi is an enormous image of Gautama Buddha in a recumbent posture, measuring about 181 feet in length.
The religious buildings at Pegu suffered greatly at the hands of the Portuguese adventurer, Philip de Brito Y Nicote, alias Maung Zinga, who held his Court at Syriam at the beginning of the seventeenth century, and also at the hands of Alompraas soldiery, who, being incensed at the acts of sacrilege committed by the Talaings during the ephemeral conquest of Burma proper, wreaked their vengeance when their turn came.
On the eastern face, the Shwehmawdaw is the most celebrated building. It is said to contain two hairs of Gautama Buddha. Like the Shwe Dagon Pagoda at Rangoon, it is a Buddhist shrine of great sanctity. Successive Kings of Burma and Pegu lavished their treasures in repairing and enlarging it. When originally built, it was only 75 feet high, but as it now stands, it is about 288 feet high, and about 1,350 feet in circumference at the base.
Thaton.aIt is stated in the Talaing chronicles that Thaton was the capital from the sixth century B.C. to the eleventh century a.d. Such a claim to high antiquity is scarcely supported by the monuments found in the locality. The two most important shrines are the Shwezayan and Thagyapaya Pagodas. The terra-cotta tablets inserted in niches in the latter are of considerable interest. Siva, with his trident, is the predominant figure ; conveyances are drawn by single ponies, and women wear their hair in big knots at the back of the head. The features of the persons represented are of Mongolian cast, and resemble those of the Karens and Taungthus of the present day.
Numismatics.aThe collection of coins in the Phayre Provincial Museum has been catalogued. Including pieces of silver bullion, it consists of 76 typical coins, which have been classified according to nationality, as follows : Arakanese, 16 ; Burmese, 8; Indian, 48 ; Siamese, 1 ; Chinese, 2 ; and European, 1. Burmese coinage dates only from the reign of Bodawpaya (1781-1819 a.d.), and few Burmese coins are, therefore, extant. Both Arakanese and Burmese coins, however, appear to have been primarily intended for a commemorative purpose, being struck in the first regnal year of Kings, or to be deposited in the relic-chambers of pagodas. Their use as currency was an afterthought, borrowed from India, where the idea that coinage for currency was an act of the State, arose, after contact with Western nations.
MR. TAW SEIN KO, the Superintendent of the Archaeological Survey in Burma, received the K.-i-H. decoration for meritorious public service at the time of the Kingas Coronation in 1903. He is President of the Society for the Prevention of Infantile Mortality, and a member of the Educational Syndicate, in which capacity he has rendered much valued assistance to the Local Government, especially with regard to the vexed and difficult questions connected with monastic and vernacular education. His services in promoting a better understanding between the British and Chinese Governments have been very great. AlmostMR. TAW SEIN KO, the Superintendent of the Archaeological Survey in Burma, received the K.-i-H. decoration for meritorious public service at the time of the Kinga s Coronation in 1903. He is President of the Society for the Prevention of Infantile Mortality, and a member of the Educational Syndicate, in which capacity he has rendered much valued assistance to the Local Government, especially with regard to the vexed and difficult questions connected with monastic and vernacular education. His services in promoting a better understanding between the British and Chinese Governments have been very great. Almost