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Distributed for National University of Singapore Press

The Discovering Vietnam’s Ancient Capital

The Archaeology and History of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long-Hanoi

The first book in English on this important archaeological excavation in the heart of Vietnam's capital, now a World Heritage site.

As Vietnam entered the twenty-first century it began to prepare for the 1000th anniversary of the founding of its capital Thang Long, now Hanoi. In the heart of the city, a rescue excavation was launched on land earmarked for the construction of a new National Assembly building. Archaeologists unearthed thirteen centuries of vestiges of the ancient city of Thang Long, yielding a richer record than anyone had dared to hope for. Construction plans were shelved, excavations widened, and at the city's millennial celebrations in 2010, UNESCO announced its inscription of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long on its World Heritage List.

This archaeological discovery has two histories. The first, told here by the archaeologists involved, is the story of the dig, which brought to light the bricks, tiles, pillars, sculptures, and ceramics of countless ancient temples and palaces. The second is the history of the citadel itself, in its early years as an outpost of the Chinese empire, in its heyday as the Forbidden City of Vietnam’s emperors, and in its downgrading and eventual destruction at the hands of the Nguyen dynasty and French colonial rulers. Bringing together history, urban history, and a fascinating story of the interplay of influences from China and Southeast Asia, this is also a fascinating case of an Asian capital city coming to understand its history and deciding how to preserve its archaeological remains.

336 pages | 60 halftones | 6 x 9


History: Asian History, Discoveries and Exploration

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Table of Contents

List of Maps and Figures
Introduction: The Discovery of Thang Long Imperial Citadel: Archaeological Dig and Historical Event
Plates: Thang Long Citadel Excavation Landscapes
Part I. Excavation of the Citadel as Historical Event
1. Archaeological Research and Discoveries at the Thang Long Imperial Citadel Site, 18 Hoàng Di?u Street, Hanoi
2. Fascinating Mysteries from a Corner of the Citadel (Section D4-D6)
3. Discoveries Change Our Understanding of Vietnam’s Ancient Architecture
4. Interpreting the Cultural Layers
5. Our Ancestors’ Bricks
6. The Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long Hanoi – World Heritage
Maps and Figures
Part II. Research into the History of the Citadel
7. Thang Long Imperial Citadel in Vietnamese Memory
8. Gao Pian ?? (822-87), the Last Protector General of Annan
9.The Location of the Archaeological Site at 18 Hoàng Di?u Street in the Structure of the Thang Long–Hanoi Citadel through the Historical Periods
10. Ð?i Vi?t and Champa, Viewed from the Excavation Trenches at 18 Hoàng Di?u Street
11. Ancient Thang Long through Old Maps
12. From Thang Long to Hanoi: the Downgrading and Destruction of the 19th-Century Citadel
List of Contributors

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