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Ancient capital city of Burma situated at the centre of the country, along the Irrawaddy river, best known for the some 13,000 temples and other religious structures that once covered its region, only about 2,000 of which are still standing. Although inhabited since the beginning of the Christian era, it entered its golden age in the 11th century with the conversion to Theravāda Buddhism of King Anawrahtā, who initiated a great programme of building monuments. This was continued by his successors until the 13th century when the city started to decline rapidly, possibly as a consequence of Kublai Khan's invasion of the region (see Mongolia).

Subjects: Archaeology — Buddhism.

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