Khmer Empire Timeline

  • Jan 1, 1002

    Civil War starts in Angkor

    Civil War starts in Angkor
    2 kings, Jayaviravarman and Suryavarman I, start a civil war within Angkor. Suryavarman is triumphant and becomes the undisputed king of the Khmer, ruling for 498 years after his victory. <-- Suryavarman I, the king who won the civil war and expanded the Khmer Empire immensely. Picture Source
  • Period: Jan 1, 1002 to Jan 1, 1049

    Suryavarman I expands Khmer Empire

    Suryavarman I, a warlike man and victor of the civil war defeats many neighbours and expands the Khmer empire. In his reign he expands the empire to much of modern Thailand, down south to the Thailand Gulf and far east to modern day Vietnam.
  • Period: Jan 1, 1113 to Jan 1, 1145

    Angkor Wat is constructed

    Angkor Wat, which is one of the largest religious buildings ever made was made within 32 years and covers around 200 hectares. It has a central tower surrounded with 4 smaller towers which includes a moat which surrounds the whole temple, which itself is on a floating piece of land.
  • Jan 1, 1181

    Jayavarman VII defeats the Chams

    Jayavarman VII defeats the Chams
    After the Chams defeat the Khmer army 3 years back Jayavarman VII recruits soldiers for a
    battle to secure the city of Angkor again. After 4 years he fights the Cham with his new army and manages to drive them back to their home. Jayavarman VII celebrates and in the process crowns himself as king of the world. <-- An impression of the Jayavarman VII's army against the Chams Picture Source
  • Period: Jan 1, 1243 to Jan 1, 1295

    Jayavarman VIII becomes king and Khmer return to Hinduism

    When Jayavarman VIII was enthroned he wanted to change the Khmer religion back to Hinduism after many years of having Buddhism as the main religion. To do this he ordered that as many Buddha statues be destroyed.
  • Jan 1, 1431

    The Khmer Empire ends

    The Khmer Empire ends
    It is uncertain why the Khmer Empire declined but it is clear that many factors contributed to the epire’s demise. These are that there was over population in the cities, lack of trade routes to other countries, and climate change which brought drought. the Khmer soon abandon their cities, such as Angkor Wat. <-- Ruins of Angkor Wat hundreds of years after the Khmer abandon it. Picture Source
  • Period: Jan 1, 1431 to Jan 1, 1432

    The Thai army attack Angkor Wat

    The Thais, who were rising in power, attacked Angkor Wat when the Khmer Empire was in steep decline and defeated them. They destroyedany of the Khmer building not made of stone. Over the next few hundreds of years the Thais take over more of the Khmer Empire territory.
  • The Khmer Empire is founded

    The Khmer Empire is founded
    Jayavarman II declared himself the “king of the world” or "chakravartin". This ensured that he could rule fiercely without opposition. He establishes the foundations to start a new empire. <-- A statue of Jayavarman II, first king of the Khmer Empire Picture Source
  • The first Khmer capital, Yasodharapura, is established

    The first Khmer capital, Yasodharapura, is established
    After years of expanding the empire and building temples Yasovarman I establishes Yasodharapura, which is the first city of Angkor. A main temple, named Bapuon, was built on Phnom Bakheng, a hill 60 metres high. <-- A temple in the city of Yasodharapura Picture Source
  • Period: to

    Jayavarman IV builds Koh Ker and makes it the Khmer’s capital.

    When Jayavarman IV was crowned as king he was so fond of his residence at Koh Ker he made it the capital of the empire.
    He then ordered that a seven-tiered pyramid be made for the worship of Shiva, the Khmer people’s god, along with 40 temples and a water reservoir.