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The ancient city of Bagan, was the political, economic, and cultural center of the Bagan Kingdom from approximately 1044 to 1287 CE. The rulers of Bagan oversaw the construction of over 5,000 religious monuments over an area covering about 65 square kilometers on the Bagan plains. More than 2,000 of the original structures have survived in varying states of repair until the present and can be found in the Bagan Archaeological Zone. The Bagan Kingdom declined due to a number of political and economic factors from the late 1200s and was superceded by several other city-states in the Myanmar central region. It continued as a religious site and experienced a revival of building activity in the 1700s. While Bagan is often described as an archaeological landscape, it is an active heritage site with functioning temples central to the local, national and international Buddhist communities.

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