Shwedagon: Golden Pagoda of Myanmar
By Elizabeth Moore, et al


For hundreds of years the golden stupa of the Shwedagon, the pagoda enshrining the sacred hairs of the Buddha, has dominated the landscape of Rangoon. Since the nineteenth century, it has been the spiritual symbol of the entire Burmese nation.

Few countries have a shrine such as this, ancient yet with as much relevance today as it had long ago. It is an unforgettable vision to see the pagoda across the Royal Lakes at sunset or as a golden shimmer against the black night sky. Everyone who has been to Myanmar has a memory of their first visit to the Shwedagon; for all born in Myanmar, the monument is a cornerstone of their life and a guardian for their future.

Shwedagon provides a multifaceted view of this magnificent Buddhist shrine. The atmosphere of a visit to the site is admirably captured in Hansjorg Mayer's photographs. The texts, by archaeologist and art historian Elizabeth Moore and Burmese scholar U Win Pe, discuss the history and evolution of the stupa, and are illustrated by evocative old pictures and plans. 

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1999 Myriam Grest Thein