Pierre Dupont

Portrait of Pierre   Dupont

Specialized in pre-Thai polities, archeologist and art historian Pierre Dupont (1908, Paris -1955, Bangkok) has particularly studied the Mon kingdom of Dvaravati which predated the Sukhothai, Chiang Mai or Ayutthaya kingdoms that thrieve between the 13th and the 15 centuries.

First at École du Louvre, then with the Musée Guimet in Paris, the French Institute in Amsterdam and Berlin, he developed a vast knowledge of Javanese and Southeast Asian arts. Joining EFEO in January 1936, he worked extensively in Angkor, the Kulen plateau and modern Thailand. With Victor Goloubew, he studied Muong rituals associated with the bronze drums. With Gilberte de Coral-Rémusat, he took part in the archaeological mission led by Philippe Stern to Angkor and Kulen.

After researching Khmer inscriptions, Pierre Dupont prospected two important sites related to Dvaravati civilization in Thailand, Nakon Pathom and Kok Vat. In the 1940's, he was Curator of the Phnom Penh National Museum (then Musée Albert-Sarrault) and Secretary of the Buddhist Institute, before being arrested by the Japanese occupation forces.

After leaving EFEO for the CNRS in 1950, he became Direction of Institut de Civilisation Indienne in 1954 and carried on various missions in India, Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia.

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