12th-century stone carvings found at Takav Gate in Cambodia's famed Angkor

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PHNOM PENH, May 2 (Xinhua) -- Archaeologists have discovered pieces of the 12th century Apsara, or fairy carvings, in the Angkor Archaeological Park in northwest Cambodia's Siem Reap province, the APSARA National Authority (ANA) said in a statement on Monday.

The stone carvings were spotted in the northern wall of the causeway of the Angkor Thom temple's Takav Gate, where the archaeologists were clearing vegetation and removing soil from the lower structure during restoration.

Archaeologist Kim Seng Pheakdey said the pieces of stones with Apsara carvings and other decorative sculptures were used as the northern wall of the causeway.

"These Apsara carvings are similar to the Apsara on the pillars of the Bayon Temple, while other stone carvings have the same shape as the ones that decorated the structure of the Takav Gate," she said.

Pheakdey said the Bayon-style Apsara carvings might have been built simultaneously with the Takav Gate and the Bayon Temple during the late 12th century and early 13th century.

She said archaeologists will do the excavation in the next step to find Deva statues that had fallen into the moat in the north of the causeway in order to restore them back to their original positions.

The Takav Gate is one of the five gates of the Angkor Thom, which was built in the late 12th century by King Jayavarman VII.

Angkor Thom is one of the key temples in the 401-square km Angkor Archaeological Park, which was inscribed on the World Heritage List of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1992. Enditem

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