civilizations of Southeast Asia

Pagan, Khmer, Trading, and Vietnam

Pagan Kingdom

The Pagan kingdom was located in the fertile Irrawaddy River valley, which was good for farming. Anawrahta was the fist great king and began to conquer surrounding areas. By 1057 he united much of what is now Myanmar under his rule. Pagan became the center of Buddhist learning because of the magnificent temples they built. The Mongols demanded tribune from Pagan and the king didn't want to gives it to them so they attacked the Mongols who on. His sons killed him so they decided to pay the tribune.

Khmer Empire

In the 800s people started conquering areas around them and creating the Khmer empire. The rulers of the Khmer empire adopted both Hindu and Buddhist beliefs and they ruled as a god. The most famous temple they build was the Angkor Wat (picture is below). They created an irrigation system that covered millions of acres so it would be easier to farm. The decline was due to costly building projects and invaders.

trading Kingdoms

The trading empire relied on agriculture and trade for their livelihood. Their most famous achievement was the Buddhist monument at Borobudur. They adopted Hinduism and Buddhism and they also blended other local beliefs. They worked to make sure the trade still passed through their empire because they had a really good trading port. Islam spread throughout the islands of Southeast Asia and the Muslim trader developed a stable trade network that linked to other Muslim ports in Asia and Africa.


Vietnam unlike most southeast empires/kingdoms they were strongly influenced by China. They took in many aspects of the civilization when they were under Chinese rule, but they had some things that they did that were their own like worshiping nature sprits as well as some other beliefs. Vietnam wanted to be independent so they broke off of Chinese ruling and became the independent kingdom of Dai Viet, in what is now northern Vietnam. When the Chinese tried to regain power they failed, the Mongols also tried to invade them but the Vietnamese defeated them and stayed independent.

Above is the map for the Khmer Empire and Vietnam