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The 30th HAGI, The 34th IAGI, and the 14th PERHAPI Annual Conference and Exhibition


Subagyo Pramumijoyo1, Marno Datun1, Agung Setianto1, Sri Surayati Supangat2, and Haryana2

Department of Geology, University of Gadjah Mada

Cultural Heritage Conservations Office of Yogyakarta

Approximately 10 km Northeast of Yogyakarta, there are 2 buried temples, i.e.: Sambisari and Kedulan
temples. Sambisari temple was renovated but Kedulan temple, located North of Kalasan, is not renovated
The main building of the temple that already existed in 869, has 12 to 12 m2 dimension
approximately 8 m height, and was buried totally by Young Merapi Volcano Sedimentary Units.


The detail stratigraphy of Kedulan temple was determined based on geological observation during
excavation works and along every excavation walls. 15 layers of sediment were recognize, vary from
breccia of laharic deposit, graded sand of river deposits, pyroclastic tuffs, and black clay with wood
fragment. Based on temple and part of temple position in the sediments layers, it can be conclude that the
temple firstly was inondated where sediment layer 2 was deposited, and was totally not used after laharic
sediment layer 4 was deposited. The laharic sediment layer 9 to 11 damaged western part of the temple
and finally the temple was covered by intercalated river deposits and pyroclastic tuffs.
For next renovation, it is proposed to left baren some excavated walls to show to visitors the burial
chronology of the temple and also for geohazard public awareness education.

Approximately 10 km Northeast of Yogyakarta,
there are 2 buried temples, i.e.: Sambisari and
Kedulan temples. These Hindus temples were
built at the same decade and already existed in
year 869 AD. Both temples have similar size, its
main building has 12 to 12 m2 dimension with
approximately 8 m height, and were buried
totally by Young Merapi Volcano Sedimentary
Units that consists of breccia, pyroclastic sands
and ash, laharic breccia, aglomerate, and andesitic
lava flow (Rahardjo et al., 1995; Mulyaningsih,
1999). Sambisari temple was renovated but all
surounded walls were totally covered by grass, so
the visitors can not observe burial history of the
temple expressed by its strata along the walls.
Kedulan temple stones was discovered in 1993
and was excavated firstly in 2001 and secondly in

2004. During the last excavation the Cultural

Heritage Conservations Office of Yogyakarta
involving geology in order to understand burial
history of the temple.
This paper will discus its burrial history and its
important showing some part of its walls to be
conserved as education media on geohazard
awareness of publics.
Stratigraphy of Kedulan temple was established
based on lithologic observation along excavation
walls. Fiveteen lithologic units can be recognized
that can be differentiated into 4 types of
sediments, that are river deposits, debris flow of
laharic deposits, surge deposits, and pyroclastic


The 30th HAGI, The 34th IAGI, and the 14th PERHAPI Annual Conference and Exhibition

Lithologic unit # 1
Oldest lithologic unit was observed on the deepest
excavation well at the main temples basement. In
the excavation pit E.5., this lithologic unit # 1
consists of dark brown clayey to fine sands that
was considered as cultural layer with its thickness
more than 20 cm.
Lithologic unit # 2
On the eastern part of this pits wall the unit # 1
was covered by river deposits of lithologic unit #
2 that consists of laminated coarse sands and fine
sands with sandy clay intercalation. This unit # 2
can be observed also in excavation pit D.6., D.10.,
I.8., along south wall of excavation pit P.III. to
P.V., and at lowest part of east excavation wall
with planar cross stratification. In the lower part
of coarse sands is commonly found platty rounded
andesitic pebble with 4 cm in diametre. This unit
average thickness is vary from 30 to 40 cm.
Lithologic unit # 3
This unit consists mostly of light grey pebbly
sands and can be found along east and north
excavation walls and south of the temple with its
thickness vary from 80 to 100 cm. Its fragments
consists of sub angular andesite that seems
floating in the fine to coarse sands.
Lithologic unit # 4
This unit consists of graded bedding sands that
can be found along east and north excavation
walls with 40 cm average thickness. Coarse sands
at its lower part graded into fine sands to clay at
its upper part.
Lithologic unit # 5
This unit can be seen in excavation pit a.3., a.4.,
on northern part of west excavation wall and also
on the north excavation wall. This unit strata tha
twas dipping south ward, consists mostly of redish
brown sandy clay. At its upper part becomes soil
with approximatelly 10 cm thick with remaining
roots of 5 cm diameter.
Lithologic unit # 6
Lithologic unit # 6 overlies unit # 5 and can be
observed only in excavation pit a.3. It consists of
black clay with some fine tree branch remnants
with thickness not more than 6 cm. Its distribution

seems very limited due to erotion during

deposition of younger lithologic unit (# 7).

Lithologic unit # 7
Unit # 7 that consists of dark grey pebbly coarse
sand laharic deposits characterized by sub angular
andesitic fragments that floats in coarse sands
matrix. In this matrix can also be found some
burning tree branches with its diameter up to 25
cm due to hot laharic flows. Its thickness is up to
80 cm and can be found on the west and north
excavation walls. On the north excavation wall,
this unit strongly eroded units # 3 and # 4. This
unit was 20o dipping southward.
Lithologic unit # 8
This unit consists of graded bedding medium
coarse fluvial sands and on its upper part shows
lamination and planar cross stratification
structures. This unit can be found along west and
north excavation walls with its thickness varies
from 8 to 150 cm due to erosion.
Lithologic units # 9 to 11
These units consist of 3 repetitive laharic
depositional sequences. Each sequence consists of
normal graded bedding, peble size on its lower
part becomes sands on its upper part. Its total
thickness is approximately 250 cm.
Lithologic units # 12 to 15
This unit consists of intercalation between river
and sand size piroclastic fall deposits. Within river
deposit spotly found pebble-gravel and clay
seems. Its total thickness is approximately 120
At spit ( 35) have found cultural coat that
predicted as temple yard. After that temple closed
by river sediment around 40 cm thick which
consist of graded bedding fine-coarse sand. This
river deposite cover the lower part of the temple
(perwara) and main temple in the north, east and
southern part. Then the temple area hit by cold
lahar with average 90 cm thick. In north and east
excavation walls this lahar layers can be trace
better. This sediment buried perwara temple into


The 30th HAGI, The 34th IAGI, and the 14th PERHAPI Annual Conference and Exhibition

middle part, it could possible that the mains

temple also buried by lahar up to inner floor. With
assumption that damage of temple resulted by this
lahar, and its position that only reaches inner
floor in main temple, hence possibility of effort to
remove statues which has found not in place. If
only pay attention on the sequence of the east
wall, shows that after the deposition of the lahar
(layers 3) deposited river sediment ( layers 4) in
80 - 200 cm thick, thickening to the westsoutwest. This sediment buried upper part of
perwara temple and even the whole temple.
Next layer after layer 4 is layer 5 (into layer 7),
only found in the northern part of the main
temple. Contact between these two layers cannot
be well observed in the field, proposed from the
cross cutting relation in the northern excarvation
wall. Layer 5 dipping 20o to the North, found
indication of soil form with thickness more than
10 cm and also found root spreadly on the whole
layers. From this condition proposed that this
layers has contacted with atmosfer for a long time,
probably more than 100 years. In few place above
layer 5 found layer 6 wich consist of black clay
with abundance of plant debris, from this layer
probably from this layer we can determine the age
(C14). Above layer 5 and 6 deposited layer 7 wich
contain of dark grey massive pebbly sandstone,
also found charcoal. of trees stem that might
burned while the deposition of these hot lahar.
This deposit cover the lower area in the north
temple. South Gate I already missing and replaced
by these lahars, otherwise East gate I under these
layers still found in good shape and also the
debris. After these event, geological hazard
happened in Kedulan area, wich are flood, laharic
flood and also pyroclastic falls ( layer 8-15).
Layer 9-11 is very interesting because probably
the sedimentation process of these layers also
make the damage of the temple even worst.
By studying, geology especially rock sequence
which cover the temple, we can know
conglomeration history and when time the
happening of. [in] temple area piled up
Furthermore research very required is research
about rock age absolutely, so that can know surely

besides temple age also time conglomeration of

The excavation wall very interesting because
showing how geology disaster (lahar, hot lahar
and floods) menacing attendance of temple. Here
require to be showed in the future that the
complete parts of the temple will show the
chronology of the temple buried. By means
seeing, studying mentioned previous, give us
awareness that attendance of active mountain
(Merapi Mount) besides giving element of hara
required by the plant, in certain moments also can
become menace of the human being existence.
Bronto, S., Sayudi, D.S, dan Hartono, G., 1996,
Variasi Luncuran Awan Panas Gunung Merapi
dan Bahayanya, Proceeding of 25th IPA Annual
Convention, 11-12 Desember, Bandung. P. 266287.
Gustiar dan Suhirman, 1993, Peta Geologi Tata
Lingkukngan, Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta-Jawa
Tengah : skala 100.000, Direktorat Geologi Tata
Lingkungan, Bandung.
Katili, J.A., F.G.S. Hons dan Siswomijoyo, S.S.,
1994, Pemantauan Gunungapi di Indonesia dan
Filipina:Letusan Besar Gunungapi, IAGI, Jakarta.
P. 106-120.
Kusumadinata, K., Ed. 1979, Data Dasar
Gunungapi di Indonesia, Direktorat Volkanologi,
Paripurno, Eko, T., 1994, Keruntuhan Candicandi Hindu Syiwa di Yogyakarta dan Peranan
Bencana Alam Geologi : Kasus Peran Bencana
Gunung Merapi dan Keruntuhan Candi
Morangan, Sambisari, Gebang dan Kedulan,
Prosiding Geologi dab Geoteknik Pulau Jawa,
Yogyakarta. P. 275-284.
Rahardjo, W., Sukandarrumidi dan Rosidi.
H.M.D, 1995, Peta Geologi Lembar Yogyakarta,
Jawa, skala 1:100.000, Edisi II, Pusat Penelitian
dan Pengembangan Geologi, Bandung.
Suaka Peninggalan Sejarah dan Purbakala, 1993,


The 30th HAGI, The 34th IAGI, and the 14th PERHAPI Annual Conference and Exhibition

Laporan Ekskavasi Penyelamatan Situs Kedulan

Tahun Anggaran 1993/1994, Departemen
Pendidikan dan Kebudayaan, Direktorat Jendral

Kebudayaan, Direktorat Perlindungan dan

Pembinaan Sejarah dan Purbakala Daerah
Istimewa Yogyakarta, tidak dipublikasikan

TABLE 1: Kedulan Temple Burial History