- Archaeological Researches on the Excavated Finds at the Ancient City of Wadee
One of the most exciting recent discoveries in the archaeologically rich terrain of Myanmar has been the resurrection of a hitherto unfamiliar ancient site of human habitation—Wadee . The following pages are intended to introduce readers to its varied remains, what has thus far been unearthed regarding its past, and how Wadee fits into the broader parameters of Myanmar’s pre-historic period, not only in relationship to other Pyu sites, but also to earlier periods, including what has been labeled the Samon culture .
The ancient city of Wadee is located at N 21°23′07.6″ and E 95°43′02.3″ near Phayagyi Village , Nahtogyi Township , Myingyan District , Mandalay Division in Central Myanmar. It is about 8 kilometers to the southeast of Nahtogyi and 3.22 kilometers south from the road that runs between Myittha and Nahtogyi. Amongst the ancient Pyu cities with circular walls, Srikshetra (Thayekhittaya) , Maingmaw (Pinle), , and Vesali (Yakhine) are the largest. Wadee is smaller than these but bigger than the ancient city of Thagara in Dawe located in Myanmar’s far south.1 [End Page 345] Measuring at the wall’s widest part, the city is 1.6 kilometers long from north to south and 1.2 kilometers from east to west and encom passes 320 acres. It is located 680 feet above sea level (Figure 1).
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Most shapes of the Pyu cities may be classified according to two types: quadrangular and circular. Beikthano and Halin are quadrangular types while Srikshetra, Maingmaw, Wadee, and Thegon are circular. Wadee [End Page 346] is a rounded scar, with its longer axis in a northeast-southwest direction. The northeast end is quite narrow while the southwest end is much more rounded and broader. It looks like an egg.2
To the city’s north are Htan Zin Village and Nyaung Pin Sauk Village . Kyi Kan Village , Daung Bo Village , and Na Ywe Taw Village are on its northeast. Aung Pan Kon village is on the city’s southwest with Hta Naung Pinle Village to the west. Phayagyi Village on the southwest is the nearest village to the ancient city of Wadee. There is a banked-up, long narrow lake to the north of Phayagyi Village. The northern end of the lake touches the western wall of Wadee. The palace mound, which was traditionally called Nandawkon , is the highest level inside the city.
Maximum temperature in this region is 37.8°C in April, while the minimum is 13.0°C in January. 9.17 inches of rain are the maximum rainfall in the area, with 3.64 inches being the minimum.3 According to U Yi Sein’s article on “Pyu” outposts, the Ancient City of Wadee was one of the “Pyu” outposts during Thayekhittaya Period, fourth to ninth centuries AD.4 In the T’ang Dynasty (618 AD–907 AD), the location of what we think may be Wadee was mentioned. It was called Mi-Ni-Tao-Li. Myanmar Chronicles did not mention Wadee, although other Pyu cities, like Beikthano, Halin, Maingmaw, and Thayekhittaya appear in some records. There were nine stone inscriptions collected from the vicinity of Wadee, kept in a place allocated for the stone inscriptions on the plinth of Shwemokehtaw Pagoda in Phayagyi Village. [End Page 347] Six stone inscriptions from the Bagan period , one from the Pinya period , one from the Inwa period , and one from the Colonial period were collected by the Department of Archaeology, Bagan Branch, Upper Myanmar.5
Among them, a stone inscription written by a chief monk named U Kumara, from the Ywa Oo Kyaung Monastery in Phayagyi Village during the colonial period, was the only one to mention Wadee. The other stone inscriptions did not recall the site, though some inscriptions mentioned Kyi Kan Pahto (Kyi Kan Stupa) and Kyi Kan Village located about 3.2 km to the east of Phayagyi Village.6
According to a colonial era stone inscription, translated by U Maung Maung Tin, Phayagyi Myo was said to be the first Wadee Myo.7 After the destruction of...