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Baka Temple - 792 AD

Jakarta (DreamLandLibrary) - Baka Temple is located about 3 km to the south of Prambanan Temple or about 19 km to the south of the city of Yogyakarta.

Ratu Baka Temple area, located on a hill with a height of ± 195.97 m above sea level, includes two villages, Sambirejo Village and Dawung Village.

Ratu Baka site is actually not a temple, but the ruins of a kingdom. Therefore, Ratu Baka Temple is often called Ratu Baka Palace.

 It was called the Baka Palace, because according to legend the site was the palace of Ratu Baka, Lara Jonggrang's father. The word 'kraton' comes from the word Ka-ra-tu-an which means the royal palace.

It is estimated that the Ratu Baka site was built in the 8th century by the Buddhist Syailendra Dynasty, but was later taken over by the Hindu Mataram kings. The 'owner' transition caused the building of the Palace of Baka to be influenced by Hinduism and Buddhism.

Ratu Baka's palace was first discovered by Dutch archaeologist HJ De Graaf in the 17th century. In 1790 Van Boeckholtz rediscovered the ruins of the ancient building.

His findings were published so that it attracted the interest of scientists such as Makenzie, Junghun, and Brumun who took notes on the site in 1814. In the early 20th century, the site of Ratu Baka was reexamined by FDK Bosch. The results of his research were reported in an article titled Keraton Van Ratoe Boko.

When Mackenzie conducted a study, he found a statue depicting a man and a woman with a head with a hug. And among the pile of stones was also found a stone pillar illustrated by animals, such as elephants, horses and others.

On the site of Ratu Baka, an inscription dating to 792 AD was called the Abhayagiriwihara Inscription. The contents of the inscription underlie allegations that the Kingdom of Ratu Baka was built by Rakai Panangkaran. The Abhayagiriwihara inscription was written using han pranagari, which is one of the characteristics of Buddhist inscriptions.

The inscription stated that Raja Tejapurnama Panangkarana, who was thought to be Rakai Panangkaran, had ordered the construction of the Abhayagiriwihara. The same name is also mentioned in the Kalasan Inscription (779 CE), Prasati Mantyasih (907 CE), and the Central Wanua Inscription III (908 CE). According to experts, the word abhaya means without hagaya or peace, giri means mountain or hill.

Thus, Abhayagiriwihara means a monastery that was built on a peaceful hill. During the Rakai Walaing Pu Kombayoni government, in 898-908, Abhayagiri Wihara changed its name to Kraton Walaing.

Ratu Baka Palace, which occupies a large enough area, consists of several building groups. Most of them are now in ruins.

The entrance gate to the tourist area of ​​Ratu Baka is located on the west side. This group of gates is located in a high enough place, so that from the vehicle parking lot, people have to go up the road for about 100 m. The entrance consists of two gates, the outer gate and the inner gate. The inner gate, which is larger, is the main gate.

The outer gate consists of 3 gates of Paduraksa which run north-south, coinciding facing east. The largest gate, which is the main gate, is located between two gates. The three gates are located on a high terrace, so to get to the terrace of the terrace one must climb two stone steps, each as high as about 2.5 m. The terrace walls are given reinforcement in the form of plaster made of andesite stones. None of the three gates whose roof is still intact, so that its original form is unknown.

About 15 m from the outer gate stands the inner gate or the main gate. This gate consists of 5 paduraksa gates that line parallel to the outer gate. The main gate is flanked by two flanking arches on each side. Although the inner gate consists of five gates, only three stairs are available.

Two small clamp staples are not connected to the stairs. The ascending stairs are equipped with stair cheeks with 'ukel' (coil) decorations at the base and giant heads at the top of the stairs' cheeks. The outer walls of the cheeks of the stairs are also decorated with sculptured motifs of flowers and tendrils. The main gate roof is gone so that its original shape is not known, but the roof of the flanking gate is still intact in the form of a pyramid with a peak in the shape of a ratna.

Batukapur Temple
About 45 m from the first gate, to the northeast, there is a 5x5 m2 foundation built of limestone. It is estimated that the walls and roof of the original building were not made of stone, but rather from other materials which were easily damaged, such as wood and shingles or ordinary tile.

Burning temple
The burning temple is in the form of a 3m terraced terrace. It is located about 37 m to the northeast of the main gate. The building has a square base with an area of ​​26 m2. The second terrace is narrower than the first terrace, so it forms a corridor around the second terrace. The surface of the upper terrace or second terrace is a lawn. The second wall of the terraces is reinforced with a sheet stone sheet pile. On the west side there is a stone staircase equipped with stair cheeks. In the center of the second terrace is a square well with a size of 4X4 ​​m2 which is used as a cremation site.

In the southeast corner of the burning temple there is an old well that is said to be a source of holy water.

Paseban is a Javanese word meaning place to face the king (seba = facing). This building is located about 45 m to the south of the limestone. Paseban is a terrace built of andesite stone with a height of 1.5 m, width 7 m and length 38 m, stretching north-south direction. The stairs going up to the Paseban floor are located on the west side. In various places on the surface of the floor found 20 piles of foundations on which to anchor building poles) and 4 grooves that are thought to be the former site of a parapet.

About 20 m from paseban, south of the gate, there is a 3 m high stone wall which encloses a land with a length of 40 m and a width of 30 m. On the north, west and south sides of the fence there is an entrance in the form of a paduraksa gate (roofed gate).

In some places on the outside of the wall there are drains, called jaladwara. Jaladwara is also found in the temples of Banyuniba and Barabudhur.

Within the stone fence there are two terraces which were built using andesite stones. Along the edge of the wall and between the two terraces there is a stone floored alley. The first terrace called pendapa, shaped like a square stage as high as 1.46 m, with an area of ​​20 m2. In Javanese, pendapa means a living room or a stretch of roofed floor which is generally located at the front of the house. The stairs going up to the pendapa are on the northeast and northwest sides.

On the surface of the pendapa floor there are 24 stone pedestals. The second stone, called 'pringgitan' is located south of the pendapa. Pringgitan means indoor or sitting room. This pringgitan also has a rectangular shape with an area of ​​20 X 6 m. On the surface of the pringgitan floor, 12 stones were found.

Place of worship
Outside the pendapa wall, to the southeast, there is a stone terrace that is still intact. At the end there are 3 small temples which are used as a place of worship. The building in the middle, which is larger than its two flanking temples, is a place to worship Lord Vishnu. The two temples flanking it, respectively, are places of worship for Shiva and Brahma.

Keputren which means the place where the daughters live is located east of the pendapa. The environment of the Keputren with an area of ​​31 X 8 m is limited by a 2 m high stone fence, but most of the stone fence has collapsed. The entrance, in the form of a paduraksa gate with Kalamakara decoration above the threshold, is located on the east and west sides.

The environment is divided by a stone wall which has a connecting door. In the first environment there are 3 square-shaped ponds. One is square, larger than the other two ponds. Two longer ponds form a rectangle stretching north-south.

In the environment adjacent to where the three square ponds above are located, there are 8 circular ponds lined up in 3 rows.

On the hillside where the Ratu Baka region is located, there are two caves, called Gua Lanang and Gua Wadon (male and female caves). Lanang Cave which is located in the northeast of 'Paseban' is a square tunnel with a height of 1.3 m, width 3.7 m and 2.9 m deep. Inside the cave, each on the left, right and back sides, there are niche like cubicles. On the cave wall there is a sculpture shaped like a rectangular frame. Mackenzie found a statue in front of the Lanang Cave.

Wadon Cave which is located about 20 m to the southeast of 'Paseban' is smaller than Lanang Cave, which is 1.3 m high, 3 wide and 1, 7 m deep. At the back of the cave there is a niche like a booth.


Photo: Special

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