KATHMANDU RESTAURA NT

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NEWAR

The Newar have a rich and highly developed culture due to their long history of urban social development. Newar inhabitation of the Kathmandu valley is so ancient that it extends beyond recorded history into the realm of legend. Historians believe the Newar settled the Kathmandu valley in the early 3rd or 4th century AD. According to popular legend, the Kathmandu valley was a giant lake until the Bodhisattva Manjushree, with the aid of a holy sword, cut open the hills that surround the valley and drained the giant lake, allowing the Newar to settle the valley land. This apocryphal legend is supported by some geological evidence of an ancient lakebed and it provides an explanation for the high fertility of Kathmandu valley soil.

The earliest record of Newar rule from the 5th century AD Licchavi dynasty. The Lichchhavi dynasty ruled for at least 600 years, followed by the Malla dynasty in 12th century AD. Nepal Bhasa script is estimated to be at least 1200 years old. Nepal Bhasa inscriptions in an ancient manuscript, Nidan, from 901 AD and on a stone tablet from 1173 AD in the courtyard of Bajrayogini Temple at Sankhu, attest to the deep roots of Newar culture in the Kathmandu valley.

Newar reign over the valley and their sovereignty and influence over neighboring territories ended approximately 250 years ago with the conquest of the Kathmandu valley in 1769 the Newar remained a pivotal force in Nepali society as merchants and government administrators, The Newar maintain a highly literate culture and their members are prominent in every sphere, from agriculture, business, education and government administration to medicine, law, religion, architecture, fine art, and literature. Newar architects are responsible for inventing Asia’s hallmark pagoda architecture. Newar devotional thangka painting, sculpture and metal craftsmanship are world-renowned for their exquisite beauty. The fine temples and palaces of Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur are largely the product of Newar architects, artisans, and sculptors

THE ART OF NEWAR

The architectural elegance of the pagodas of the Valley of Kathmandu is added a refined decoration... gods, goddesses finely carved embellish the corbels of the temples, animals of stone (lions, dragons) keep the entry of it; inside statues of bronze and paintings votive are the object of veneration. The weaving of carpet (Tibetans) and the painting of "Thangka" are practised in workshops which one can visit. The Newar craftsman is of a high artistic quality, that it is bronzers of Patan, of the painters on fabric of Bhaktapur, the wood-carvers of Bungamati.

WOOD

The work of wood is not solely reserved for the religious buildings and the palates, in all the Valley almost all the old houses have balcony and/or window of carved wood embedded in pink brick. In the temples in fact mythological representations were carved in wood... with a remarkable ability, by anonymous craftsmen.

   

BRONZE

Patan is famous for the talent of its bronzers of low Buddhist caste: statutory, objects ritual, decoration of the temples, object of the everyday life are their speciality. One still admires in the palates the marvellous doors with the pushed back copper lintels

         

PAINTING OF THANKAS

Thangkas are the paintings on fabric carried out by Buddhist craftsmen. Of religious inspiration these fabrics tell the prestigious episodes of the life of the Buddha, or reproduce mandalas (abstract painting symbolizing the way towards the illumination) Of object ritual, incomprehensible enough for the uninitiated person, they become simple decorative objects for the tourists, which does not remove anything with their beauty and the precision and smoothness of their blow of brush. A museum of old paintings on fabric is visited in Bhaktapur.

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