Archaeologists Find Six-Foot-Tall, 800-Year-Old Statue  Near Angkor WatA statue thought to be from the late 12th to the early 13th century has been found at Cambodia’s famed Angkor temple complex. (AFP)

Archaeologists in Angkor Thom were taken aback by surprise when they began excavating, hoping to find small artefacts like shards of pottery and instead found a statue that was a nearly perfectly intact, that measures just over six feet tall, weighs 440 pounds, and was found at a site that is 800 years old. The statue is believed to be from the time period of Cambodia's King Jayavarman, who ruled the Khmer Empire from 1181 to 1220.

Angkor Archaeological Park is one of the most important archaeological sites in southeast Asia. In an interview with local paper The Cambodian Daily, archaeologists from the Aspara Authority, the government organisation that manages Angkor Park, described the find as "something that only happens in the movies."

The archaeologists stumbled upon the statue on the second day of a 12-day project to study a canal connected to the remains of a twelfth-century hospital

The Aspara Authority claims the statue was buried just 16 inches deep. Much of the ornamental decorations depicting the period's dress can still be discerned; however, parts of both of its legs are missing.

The discovery of the statue has been hailed as one of the most important finds in the region.

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