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TRAVEL MYANMAR » CENTRAL & WESTERN » History of Innwa
 
 
History of Innwa 
 

INNWA OR AVA


Innwa, formerly known as Yadana Pura, situated at the confluence of river Ayeyawaddy and river Dokhtawadi, Myitnge in Upper Myanmar, but the king had a canal dug to join the Myint Nge and Myint Tha rivers thus cutting off the capital as an island, safe from enemy attacks. It is about 11 miles (18 km) from Mandalay. Its classical name is Ratanapura (The City of Gems). Until modern times, Myanmar is known as Ava to the outside world. With a few brief interruptions, Ava was the capital of the Burmese kingdom for more than four hundred years.

Innwa was founded by King Thadominhbya in 1364 after the fall of Pinya and Sagaing Kingdoms. It became the royal city during the reign of Nyaungyan Min and again under King Hsinbyushin, the third King of the Kingbaung dynasty.

The city has inner and outer walls unlike those of the other old Myanmar cities. The brick fortification is not a quadrangular form but has zigzagged walls assuming an outlined figure of a stylized lion seated on its hinds. The citadel is not centrally disposed but occupies the north-eastern sector of the outer enclosure. The lay-out of the inner city has been amended three time, first by Nyaungyan Min in 1597, King Hsinbyushin in 1763 and finally by King Bagyidaw in 1832.

Innwa is of highly historical significance; the panoramic view includes the pagoda-studded Sagaing Hill; red-bricked fortress at the far end; a bridge crossing the river Ayerwaddy, and the distinctive dome-shape Kaunghmudaw Pagoda (Rajamanicula) and the twin pagodas are called Scrabbling Golden Cockerel and Roosting Golden Cockerel. Besides, there are innumerable cave temples stupas and other edifices of immense historical interest.