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Belanjong Inscription

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The Belanjong Inscription (or Belanjong Pillar, locally Prasasti Blanjong) is Bali’s oldest known artefact dating from the Saka year 835 (914 AD) and for folks interested in archaeology it’s defiantly worth the quick detour, but despite its historical significance, it’s somewhat difficult to see and only of mild interest to the passing traveller.

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Discovered in 1932 and remaining in its original location, the 177 centimetre tall cylindrical stone pillar has a diameter of 62 centimetres, crowned with a carved lotus element which may have been the plinth for a since lost statue, and inscribed in two different scripts, Balinese and Nagari, in two different languages, both ancient Balinese and Sanskrit.

Read carefully... Photo taken in or around Belanjong Inscription, Sanur, Indonesia by Sally Arnold.

Read carefully... Photo: Sally Arnold

Curiously the scripts and languages are mixed up from what is considered the norm and has only partly been deciphered, but bears the name of Sri Kesari Warmadewa believed to be Bali’s first king, and seems to refer to military or trade connections possibly with Nusa Penida or even Maluku. However, even if you are a scholar of ancient script and language, the inscriptions are mostly covered by a ceremonial cloth, and the entire pillar is enclosed in a wood and dust-smeared glass structure that obscures ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 200 words.)


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