Two on Heritage List — Myanmar’s stone inscription and gold letter on world heritage

The Myazedi Stone Inscription and the Golden Letter of King Alaungphaya to King George II have been recognized as documentary heritage of world significance. Photo: Culture

The 12th meeting of the International Advisory Committee (IAC) of the Memory of the World Programme took place in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, from 4 to 6 October, with the committee approving the inclusion of 47 out of 88 nominations in the World Heritage List.
Myanmar submitted two nominations for inclusion in the memory of the world programme and both have won inscriptions on the list of the documentary heritage of world significance. One is the Myazedi stone inscription and the other is the Golden Letter of the Myanmar King Alaungphaya to King George II of Great Britain.

The Myazedi Stone Inscription
The Myazedi Stone Inscription

Located in the historic city of Bagan, the Myazedi stone inscription is a unique quadrilingual document of history, religion and culture. The inscription is believed to have been inscribed in 1113 AD. The four-sided stone pillar bears four languages Pyu, Mon, Myanmar and Pali, on each side. Its authenticity and intact texts have been identified as a document of rare historical value. The quadrilingual stone inscription is regarded as the oldest writing of the Myanmar Language documenting the history, religion and culture of the 12th century.
The Myazedi stone inscription records the administration, social and economic affairs, literary works of religion, construction of pagodas, enshrinement of Buddha statues, the enslavement of villages by royal princes and princesses, respect for parents, and meritorious deeds of Bagan Period.
The second nomination is a letter made from pure gold that was sent by Myanmar King to King George II in 1756. Engraved on a gold sheet and adorned with 24 rubies, the Golden Letter of the Burmese (Myanmar) King Alaungphaya to King George II is an entry of documentary heritage submitted by Germany, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Myanmar for inclusion in the Memory of the World Register in 2014. According to historical researchers, King Alaungphaya gave the letter to his counterpart in 1756.
The letter given by a Myanmar king to his British counterpart is of outstanding aesthetic value considered as a unique attestation in world history as well as in the history of Myanmar and Europe. The content of the letter is a trade proposal from King Alaungphaya to King George II in the 18th century. Currently, the letter is kept at the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Library in Hannover, Germany.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) introduced its Memory of the World Programme in 1992 and has so far inscribed 348 documentary heritage sites from world nations on the World Heritage List.—MNA

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