The Khmer Empire (Khmer: ចក្រភពខ្មែរ), or the Angkorian Empire (Khmer: ចក្រភពអង្គរ), are the terms that historians use to refer to Cambodia from the 9th century to the 15th century when the nation was a Hindu/Buddhist empire in Southeast Asia.
When was the Khmer Empire at its greatest?
Reigning over an area that would today include Cambodia and parts of Laos, Thailand and Vietnam, the Khmer Empire flourished from the 9th to the 13th century and at its peak was the most powerful empire in Southeast Asia.
What is unique about the Khmer Empire?
The Khmer Empire is one of the most important ancient civilizations in southeast Asia established between 802 CE to 1431 CE. Withdrawing from the kingdom of Chenla around 800 CE, the empire is known to have largely ruled in parts of modern-day Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, and southern Vietnam.
Why did the Angkor empire fall?
The cause of the Angkor empire’s demise in the early 15th century long remained a mystery. But researchers have now shown that intense monsoon rains that followed a prolonged drought in the region caused widespread damage to the city’s infrastructure, leading to its collapse.