Mingalazedi pagoda, Mingalazedi temple, Mingala Zedi, Mingalar Zedi
About ½ kilometer South of the old Bagan city wall
Late period, Bell shaped stupa
Several less known monuments like the A Ga Te Hpaya Gyi and the Mya Zedi
Mingalazedi Pagoda, Last of the large Bagan temples
The Mingalazedi is the last of the large temples built in Bagan before the Mongol armies led by Kublai Khan invaded the Kingdom, which led to the end of the Bagan empire.
The pagoda is a late period Bagan style, symmetrical structure about 40 meters high.
End of Bagan architectural development
After the Mon influenced temples of the early period and the first multi storey structures of the middle period, the Mingalazedi Pagoda marks the top of architectural skills of the Bagan builders and the end of Bagan style architectural development.
On top of three rectangular receding terraces is a platform, on which a large bell shaped stupa with horizontal concentric rings is placed. At the four corners of each terrace is a smaller stupa. At the center of all four sides are stairways that lead to the platform on top of the third terrace.
Glazed terracotta Jataka plaques
The terraces contain a set of glazed terracotta plaques with depictions from the Jataka tales. These tales of which there are 547 tell the stories about the previous lives of the Buddha. Unfortunately, the set of plaques is incomplete and some are badly weathered. The stairs to the platform on top of the third terrace have been closed to prevent further deterioration of the pagoda.
On the grounds of the temple complex that is surrounded by a wall is a library building made of brick. In this building the Tripitaka, the Buddhist scriptures containing the teachings of the Buddha was kept. Most library buildings in those days were made of wood, and have been destroyed by fire.
The 13th century lacquer ware items found in the Mingalazedi Pagoda are among the oldest in Bagan. The Mingalazedi Pagoda was damaged during the 1975 earthquake, but has been restored since.