Mahamuni Shrine, Mandalay

Erawan is the Thai name of Airavata, the three-headed elephant on which Indra rides. The Irrawaddy River is named after Erawan.

The Khmer bronze statues, shown here and in the following pages, were taken as spoils of war from Angkor Wat to Thailand in 1431. Following additional conquests, they were taken to Pegu (north of present-day Rangoon) in 1564, and to Arakan in 1663. Finally in 1784, King Bodawpaya conquered Arakan and removed the bronzes, along with the Mahamuni statue seen on the previous page, to their present location in Burma.