Angkor

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Angkor (Khmer: អង្គរ) is a region of Cambodia that served as the seat of the Khmer Empire, which flourished from approximately the 9th to 13th centuries. The word Angkor is derived from the Sanskrit nagara (नगर), meaning "city".[1] The Angkorian period began in AD 802, when the Khmer Hindu monarch Jayavarman II declared himself a "universal monarch" and "god-king", until 1431, when Ayutthayan invaders sacked the Khmer capital, causing its population to migrate south to the area of Phnom Penh.

The ruins of Angkor are located amid forests and farmland to the north of the Great Lake (Tonle Sap) and south of the Kulen Hills, near modern-day Siem Reap (13°24′N, 103°51′E), and are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The temples of the Angkor area number over one thousand, ranging in scale from nondescript piles of brick rubble scattered through rice fields to the magnificent Angkor Wat, said to be the world's largest single religious monument. Many of the temples at Angkor have been restored, and together, they comprise the most significant site of Khmer architecture. Visitor numbers approach two million annually.

In 2007, an international team of researchers using satellite photographs and other modern techniques concluded that Angkor had been the largest preindustrial city in the world, with an elaborate system of infrastructure connecting an urban sprawl of at least 1000 square kilometres to the well-known temples at its core.[2] The closest rival to Angkor, the Mayan city of Tikal in Guatemala, was between 100 and 150 square kilometres in total size.[3] Although its population remains a topic of research and debate, newly identified agricultural systems in the Angkor area may have supported up to one million people.[4]

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