An Apsara Authority team has discovered a wooden structure more than 1,000 years old with a Ganesh statue at the Angkor Wat temple’s northern pond during restoration and excavation work.
Srun Tech, the Apsara Authority’s northern pond restoration project manager, said on Wednesday the experts had been working to restore soil in the pond for more than a month before the discoveries.
He said the team unearthed the wooden structure while digging in the centre of the pond.
“This wooden structure has two beams at the bottom and was on laterite. We are still trying to find out what the wooden structure was used for,” Mr Tech said. “We have not come across a wooden structure before, only stone ones.”
“We need to study it and consult experts on wood to help determine its exact age,” he added.
Im Sokrithy, Head of Conservation of Monuments in the Angkor Park Department, said the wooden structure, which is approximately a thousand years old, is still in good condition. The site will be made into a sacred site by placing the Ganesh statue.
“In the centre of this wooden structure, we found a Ganesh statue that was deliberately placed there,” he said.
Mr Sokrithy added the experts will continue to study the structure in more detail to determine what type of wood was used at the time.
He also said pieces of wood, stone and ceramics were also found in the ancient pond’s site.
“Some ceramic pieces existed since the Angkor era, others in the 11th, 12th and 16th centuries. So, it is evident we have found significant evidence, in addition to the previous inscriptions, which imply Cambodians had never abandoned Angkor Wat,” Mr Sokrithy said.
In May, the Apsara Authority began to excavate and restore the northern pond at Angkor Wat temple.
According to experts after over 800 years, sediment accumulated in the northern pond at Angkor Wat temple is now between 2.6 metres and three metres thick and excavations have to be carried out carefully.