Pak Hou – 25th May 1867

NAM OU CAVE

In the evening, we arrived at the confluence of the Nam Ou, the river which Commander de Lagree had thought of ascending for a while. Across from its mouth and on the right bank of the river, high cliffs rose up vertically. On their flank was a cave deeper than the preceding ones and which the indigenous people had transformed into a sanctuary. We climbed to it with the help of the steps cut out of the rocks. Buddhas of all sizes were stacked up in every nook and cranny; flowers, banners, umbrellas, all kinds of votive objects decorated the altars. The flickering of the torches which gave us light caused great shadows to dance in the depths of this natural temple and made the figure of the prophet of Kapilavaston, normally so calm, look grotesque.

Garnier, Vol 2: 1-3

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