Civilization in China was the dominant political and cultural force in Asia during the 800s A.D. However, it was not the only force. Other nations also thrived in the area. One of these was the kingdom of Khmer.
By 1100 A.D., Khmer would conquer much of Southeast Asia. During this time, they would build hundreds of temples to both Hindu and Buddhist gods. They also built a number of public works projects, including roads, reservoirs and canals. These irrigation systems allowed them to grow and harvest a large amount of rice every year, which helped bring more wealth into their nation.
During the 1100s A.D., a Khmer king by the name of Suryavarman II came to power in Khmer. Suryavarman commissioned a temple to honor both the Hindu god Vishnu as well as himself. This magnificent building, which he called Angkor Wat, nearly bankrupt the kingdom. For the next three hundred years, Khmer would experience a decline that would end in 1431 A.D, when they would be conquered by the Thai people.