Soemingyi Monastery

Soemingyi Pagoda and Monastery
See Reference Books

Type of monument Type III monastery
LocationSouth of Abeyadana Temple
Built bySenior Queen or Lady Soe Min Gyi
DateA D 1204
Monument Number
Soemingyi Monastery

The people of Bagan built a variety of buildings for the Three Gems-for the Buddha, pagodas and temples to enshrine the holy relics and house the images; for the Law, libraries in which to keep the Pitaka; and for the monastic Order, monasteries to provide shelter, in the words of an inscription, ” to give a pleasant shade agreeable in all three seasons”.

The monasteries were built both with brick and wood, but it is only the brick monasteries-called kalakyaung or “Indian monasteries” –which have survived. These brick monasteries are of three main types:

Type I, the simplest, is a double-storeyed square structure with a central block which is sometimes turned into a central cell.

Type II, slightly more elaborate, is also square in plan and has a central chamber surrounded by a corridor and cells ranged around three of the sides.

Type III, the most elaborate, is rectangular as well as square, and has a large central hall surrounded by cells.

The Somingyi is a representative of the Type III monastery. Square in plan, it has a vestibule on the eastern side and a double-storeyed sanctum on the western side. There is a central hall, with cells ranged along its northern and southern sides. A staircase in the southeastern corner leads to the roof which was of wood and probably flat.

Somingyi Monastery (Google Map)

Reference Books:

Glimpse of Glorious Bagan, Universities Historical Research Centre, Yangon, Myanmar, The University Press, 1996

Pictorial Guide to Pagan, Ministry of Culture, Yangon, Myanmar, The Printing and Publish Corporation, Reprint 1975

The Pagodas and Monuments of Bagan, Vol. 1, Translated by Dr Khin Maung Nyunt, Ministry of Information, Yangon, Myanmar, Graphic Training Centre (G.T.C), 1995

The Pagodas and Monuments of Bagan , Vol. 2, English Text by Dr Khin Maung Nyunt, Ministry of Information, Yangon, Myanmar, Graphic Training Centre (G.T.C), 1998

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