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                             No. 0264(I)                  29-12-97
(1)		Government Encouraging, Providing Assistance for Propagation of Every
		A ceremony to present certificates and medals for the religious 
examination organized by Hindu Religious Training Central Committee was held
at the National Theatre on Myoma Kyaung Street on 28 December. The Hindu
religious examination is held annually with the sponsorship of Thanantana
Dhammapalaka Organization of the Hindu faithful with the aim of nurturing
Hindu youths to keep the code of conduct, possess good character and promote
their awareness of cultural and religious ethnics. Deputy Minister for
Religious Affairs praised the organization which sponsored such a religious
and moral improvement of Hindu youths and urged them to cooperate and shoulder
duties in the interest of their religion as well as the nation. Afterwards,
Deputy Minister and officials presented certificates and medals to those who
passed the exam.
(2)		Youth Apostolate (Yangon) Holds Christmas Programme
		A Christmas Programme at the Strand Hotels, sponsored by the Youth
Apostolate (Yangon) on 28 December, was attended by Deputy Minister for
Religious Affairs. The programme commenced with Christmas hymns by Youth
Apostolate Chairperson Ms Geraldine Williams. Youth Chaplain Father Edwin
David expressed thanks and Archbishop Gabriel blessed the gathering and
brought the event to a close.
(3)		This office is presenting to readers an article written by May May Aung
entitled " National Museum, the Symbol of Myanmar Pride and Honour for your
reading pleasure.
		National Museum, the Symbol of Myanmar Pride and Honour
		As you go along Pyay Road from south to north, you will find the National
Museum, a grand, sturdy structure, on your right, across from the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs. Standing tall in the open premises of the Museum is the grand
and majestic statue of King Bayint Naung, founder of the second Myanmar
Empire. The new National Museum is situated at No. 66/74, Pyay Road and was
inaugurated on September 18, 1996. Construction work of the 380-foot long and
200-foot wide Museum began on June 23, 1990 and the total cost of the five-
storey building amounted to kyats 365.991 million.
		The National Museum was first inaugurated on June, 1952 at Jubilee Hall,
Shwedagon Pagoda Road. It was then shifted and opened at the Pansondan
building from February 8, 1970 and was there up to the end of 1994. The
National Museum, a symbol of pride and honour for the Myanmars, has a rich
collection of antiques, cultural objects, arts and handicrafts of national
races, the royal regalia, musical instruments , paintings etc. displayed in
different showrooms. 
		The Lion Throne Hall, the Yadanabon Period Showroom and the Myanmar
Epigraphy and Calligraphy Showroom are on the ground floor. The Lion Throne or
"Sihasana Pallin", the symbol of Myanmar sovereignty, is the main exhibit on
this ground floor. This lion Throne constructed in 1816 is so called because
it is decorated with figures of lion at the base. Richly gilded and can be
dismantled, it was used by the King when hearing lawsuits. The British
Government took it to Calcutta Museum in 1902 and returned it to the Myanmar
Government when the Union of Myanmar regained her independence in 1948.
Surrounding the Great Lion Throne are miniature replica models of the thrones
used by Myanmar Kings in ancient times. They are the Sihasana pallanka (Myay
Nan), the Hamsasana pallanka (Hamsa Throne), the Gajasana pallanka (Elephant
Throne), the Bhamarasana pallanka (Bumble Bee Throne), the Sinkhasana pallanka
(conch Shell Throne) and the Migasana pallanka (Deer Throne).
		The Yadanabon Period Showroom exhibits priceless articles of the Myanmar
Royal Family including miniature models of the royal chambers, the couch of
the Reverend Sayadaw worshipped by King Thibaw, the royal couches of King
Mindon and his chief Queen, a wooden screen carved out of a single log for the
Royal Palace and the ivory chair of King Thibaw. The Myanmar Epigraphy and
Calligraphy Showroom displays the evolution of the Myanmar alphabets as well
as the manuscripts of renowned writers of Myanmar. On this ground floor, there
is a souvenir shop where you can buy some Myanmar handicrafts.
		On the first floor are the showrooms for Myanmar historic Period, Pre-
historic Period, Photo-historic Period and the Royal Regalia. A miniature
model of the 10,000-year old " Pyadalin Cave" bears witness to a flourishing
neolithic culture and mural paintings. Gold and silversmiths flourished in the
Pyu Period: and distinct styles of silver coins, silver lotus blossom and
silver reliquary in the form of the Bo tree are exhibited in the Pre-historic
Period Showroom. The Myanmar Historic Period Showroom has on display a rich
collection of bronze and stone images of the 11th and 13th centuries: it is
the very distinguished Bagan Period -a period of great 
significance in the history of Myanmar-flourished between the 11th and 14th
centuries. The highlight of this showroom is the royal regalia displayed in
front of the throne to the left and the right in customary order, when the
Kings had audience to receive homage.
		The exhibits on the second floor are the Myanmar Traditional Folk Art
Showroom and the Myanmar Performing Arts Showroom where one can observe the
traditional folk art of the Myanmars as well as the ten traditional arts and
crafts. These ten traditional arts and crafts are the craft of blacksmith,
goldsmith, silversmith, the art of making items from bronze, copper of brass,
the art of making decorative work with stucco, the craft of masonry, the art
of carving wood or ivory, the art of stone sculpture, the craft of a turner,
the art of painting and the art of making lacquerware.
		Among the musical instruments of display, the Myanma traditional orchestra
(saing waing) and musical instrument in the form of a crocodile are unique.
Visitors can view the photographs of well-known Myanmar "Zat" artistes of
yesterday, the dance attire of these "zat" artistes as well as the masks tom
portray " Ramayana" and Dasagirl"- the chief characters of the Ramayana Dance
and Drama. The showroom also displays the musical instruments in Myanmar
style, the Myanmar marionette stage and the various musical instruments of the
national races. 
		Myanmar Art Gallery (1) and (2) are on the third floor of the Museum. Copies
of the drawings from the walls of the ten thousand years old Pyadalin Cave,
copies of was paintings of other periods, original oil and water colour
paintings of renowned Myanmar artists like U Ba Zaw, U Chit Mye, Saya Saung ,
U San Win, U Ngwe Gaing, U Ba Kyi, U Min Naing and others are among the
exhibits here. The works of U Ba Nyan, a pioneer who introduced the European
school of painting during the late 1920s are also displayed. 
		The fourth floor exhibits objects of cultural traditions of national races
in the showroom for the culture of National races. The main objective of this
showroom is to consolidate national solidarity and to preserve the culture of
various indigenous races of the Union. The Buddha Images Showroom on this
floor also displays one hundred and seventy-six antique images of the Pyu,
Pinya, Innwa, Taungngoo, Nyaung Yan and Konbaung Periods.
		Arrangements are underway to exhibit ancient Myanmar attire, other cultural
objects of national races and fossils including fossilized primates excavated
as well as collected by a research team led by Colonel Than Tun, Head of
Department, Office of Strategic Studies, from the Pondaung area and others
donated by the locals. Fossils are evidences that Stone Age human beings lived
in Myanmar and there also existed creatures in Myanmar prior to the period of
humans. It can now be firmly said that there were living beings in Myanmar 40
million years ago and if Myanmar scholors can present with firm and full
evidence to the world, it can be assumed that human civilization began in our
motherland. The Ministry of Education is making arrangements to invited
foreign experts to a conference to look into the facts related to the fossils
and the Pondaung formation and finally ascertain them.
		The National Museum is a significant landmark in the history of our
country's cultural development. It is the place where national and cultural
heritage of the entire Myanmar people is preserved. A visit to the Museum
which is open daily from 1:00 AM to 3:30 PM except on Mondays and gazetted
holidays, promises sights and sounds of Myanmar's glory. A mere entrance fee
of US$ 5 will bring you satisfaction ten times ten is a guarantee.