Angkor Wat’s Tedious Construction No Longer a Mystery

By Nick Venable | 8 years ago

People always underestimate the raw power and dedication that humans can be capable of. Nearly every sizable monument that wasn’t built post-photography has a handful of legendary falsities behind its origin. More often than not, it comes down to aliens visiting and dropping off future technologies that are apparently only good for one stone monument per secret technology, as none of that information was ever passed on. The Angkor Wat temple in Angkor, Cambodia isn’t always included in those conversations, as its 12th century construction was obviously long after the major pyramid days. But the secrets of its construction has still remained a mystery until now.

The Angkor Wat is a 500-acre temple made up of 5 to 10 million bricks, all gathered from relatively nearby quarries at the base of a mountain. If we were just talking gravel, it’d be no question how they got it there, and the temple would probably look pretty shitty. But these were massive stones that weigh up to 3,300 lbs. If only Legos had been invented back in the day.

Study co-author Estuo Uchida, of Japan’s Waseda University, told LiveScience that over 50 of these original quarries were found at the base of Mt. Kulen, along with the transportation channels used to get the blocks to the site. Using satellite images, they identified a network of hundreds of makeshift roads linking quarries to the temple. It was previously assumed that the blocks were taken by river, to avoid carrying over such large spaces of land, but it was discovered the road route was only 22 miles, while the river would have more than doubled their work at 54 miles. It may not have been the first shortcut ever discovered, but it was a major one. Funny, it wasn’t said just how close this road network was to the alien landing site.

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