The central city of Da Nang has proposed that the Mukhalinga, a statue of the Hindu god Shiva that was unearthed at the My Son Sanctuary site in 2012, is officially recognised as a national treasure.
Ho Van Tinh, Deputy Director of the city's Culture Department, told Vietnam News on October 20 that the statue was discovered near the E4 tower of the My Son Sanctuary after a heavy downpour.
The yellow brown stone statue, which dates back to between the 7th and 8th centuries, is 146.5cm tall and 41.5cm wide.
It has three parts shaped like a circle, an octagon and a square. The top part is a sculpture of the head of Shiva.
In Hindu mythology, Mukhalinga or Mukhalingam (literally "linga with a face") is a linga with one or more human faces. The linga is an iconic representation of the Hindu god Shiva and is sometimes interpreted as a phallic symbol.
Thirty artifacts have been recognised as national treasures so far, including the My Son E1 altar (Champa culture 192 – 1832) and TraKieu altar (Champa culture 192 – 1832), both found in Quang Nam province.
Champa kings ruled the central region between the 4th and 13th centuries.