Preah Bot

Buddhist painted scrolls in Cambodia
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Graduallly fading in disuse and ignored by art histrians and museums, the beautifully painted Buddhist scrolls known in Cambodia as preah bot have been produced since the end of the 19th century as a manifestation of the faith of pious Cambodian lay people, and are an important element of the country's rich Buddhist cultural heritage. A large variety of cloths are illustrated, showing events from the life of the Buddha and his previous lives narrated in the Jataka tales, with particular emphasis on the Vessantara Jataka, detailing both its Pali version and previously unknown Khmer versions.

This important book is the first to document preah bot at a time when the production of such cloths for religious use is declining and being replaced by commercial production for tourists or art collectors.