Devaraja of the Khmer Empire
Royal Arms of Cambodia
Imperial Arms of Kambujadesa
Chakravarman I
since 1997

Style: His/Her Imperial Majesty

His/Her Divineness

Heir apparent: Sumdaravana
First monarch: Suryavarman II
Formation: 1135
Residence: Imperial Palace of Angkor
Titles: Divine Emperor of the Empire of Kampuchea
King of the World
Son of the Gods
Great Ruler of the Khmer People
Reigning house: Vishnulokasurya dynasty

 The Monarch of the Khmer Empire is the ruler of the Khmer Empire. The monarch's title is Devaraja (if male) or Devarani (if female). The current monarch, Chakravarman I, ascended the throne upon the death of his father on 6 April 1997.

History of the Khmer Empire

Before that rulers of the Khmer Empire styled themselves as emperors, had the title of king. Jayavarman II declared independence from the Srivijaya Empire in 802 and established the Kingdom of Kambujadesa with himself as ruler. The rulers continued to have this title until Suryavarman II expanded the kingdom into a great empire and crowned himself emperor. The role of women in the empire was to be queens, servants, daily life (work around their families house) and dancing for the rulers.


The emperor of the Khmer Empire, the devaraja, is worshiped as a demigod, son of the gods and supreme ruler of the empire. The emperor is viewed as son and re-incarnation of the Hindu gods. The people believe that the emperor is appointed by the gods and therefore, any limitation of his power would be against the will of the gods. The emperor is viewed as the re-incarnation of the god Shiva and is thus the extreme masculinity (if there is an reigning empress then she represents the Goddess Shakti and thus extreme femininity). The emperor may choose any woman that he wants as one of his concubines. Women who become concubines live in extreme luxury for the rest of their lives and it is a great honor to become a wife of the emperor. In the last ages it is common for emperors to only take a few wives or one wife. Therefore, the Khmer Empire is an autocratic, divine and absolute monarchy where the emperor rules with an iron fist. He and his family reside in the Grand Imperial Palace of Angkor, in the heart of the city. The emperor has infallibility, inviolability and his word is law. Many people have criticized the Khmer Empire for its lack of democracy. Some of the titles that the emperor carries are "His Divinenes, the Almighty Emperor of the Great Empire of Kampuchea", Divine Emperor of the Empire of Kampuchea, Chakravartin, King of the World, Son of the Gods and Great Ruler of the Khmer People. There have only been two known instances of a woman ascending the throne. Suryavarna, the first Empress regnant, was empress from 1145-1160. Tribhuwana, also Queen of Majapahit, became Co-Empress after she married Vizalavarman I of the Khmer Empire. The current constitution allows women to ascend the throne. The current emperor is Chakravarman I, who was crowned emperor in 1995 at the age of ten. He is married to Suprassana Devi and has one daughter Sundaravana .She is the current heir to the throne. Most emperors receive a posthumous name and sometimes a nickname.


Article 5 of the Khmer constitution decrees that the ruler must meet this requirements. The Emperor must:

  • follow the Hindu religion
  • not have betrayed the nation
  • be a member of the Imperial family
  • be physically and mentally capable of performing his/her duties
  • not have committed heinous crimes

Line of Succession

If the emperor does not name a successor then the first in line becomes emperor. Women are currently allowed to ascend the throne. The constitution implements absolute cognatic primogeniture.

The line of succession is described below:

  • 1. Oldest child
  • 2. Children from oldest to youngest
  • 3. Siblings of the emperor from oldest to youngest
  • 4. Consort of the emperor/empress
  • 5. Grandchildren of the emperor from oldest to youngest
  • 6. Children of the siblings of the emperor from oldest to youngest
  • 7. Other relatives of the emperor

List of Emperors

Kings of the Khmer Empire
Number Name of King Reign Nickname or and/posthumous name
1 Jayavarman II 802-835 Paramesvara
2 Jayavarman III 835-877 Viṣṇuloka
3 Indravarman III 877-890 Unknown
4 Yasovarman I 889-910 Paramashivaloka
5 Harshavarman I 910-923 Unknown
6 Ishanavarman II 923-928 Paramarudraloka
7 Indravarman III 877-890 Unknown
8 Yasovarman I 889-910 Paramashivaloka
9 Harshavarman II 941-944 Bhrahmaloka
10 Rajendravarman II 944-968 Unknown
11 Jayavarman V 968-1001 Unknown
12 Udayadityavarman I 1002 Unknown
13 Jayavirahvarman 1002-1006 Unknown
14 Suryavarman I 1006-1050 Unknown
15 Udayadityavarman II 1050-1066 Unknown
16 Harshavarman III 1066-1080 Sadaśivapada
17 Jayavarman VI 1090-1107 Paramakaivalyapada
18 Dharanindravarman I 1107-1113 Unknown
19 Suryavarman II 1066-1080 "The Great" and "The Muscular" Paramavishnuloka
Emperors of the Khmer Empire
Number Name of Devaraja Reign Nickname or and/posthumous name
1 Suryavarman II 1135-1145 "The Great" and "The Muscular" Paramavishnuloka
2 Suryavana 1145-1160 "The Beautiful" Sundaramahila
3 Suryavarman III 1155-1195 "The Great" Dvitiyakaäbhinava
4 Srindavarman I 1195-1235 "The Golden" Kanakamayanara
5 Ksarakajatavarman I 1235-1245 "The Decline" Hrasavarman
6 Vilaksanavarman I 1245-1255 "The Failure" Asaphalatavarman
7 Darzaniyavarman I 1255-1265 "The Collapse" Pravlaya
8 Jayavarman VII 1265-1315 "The Great" Pratyagacchatiloka
9 Vizalavarman I 1315-1351 "The Giant" Sthulavarman
9 Tribhuwana 1335-1351 "The Charming Lady" Madhuradevi
10 Nirupaplavavarman I 1351-1380 "The Handsome" Zamtamaloka
11 Pumstvavarman I 1380-1422 "The Masculine" Devaloka
12 Samhanavatavarman I 1422-1460 "The Muscular" Samhananopetaloka
13 Balavanavarman I 1460-1490 "The Strong" Samarthaloka
14 Hasyavarman I 1490-1516 "The Crazy" Hsyakathaloka
15 Samulbanavarman I 1516-1536 "The Bloody" Samsmaraniyaloka
16 Gudhavarman I 1536-1560 "The Mysterious"
17 Samhananopetavarman I 1560-1596 "The God" Surendra
18 Priyavarman I 1596-1630 "The Incapable" Azaktavarman
19 Zobhanavarman I 1630-1659 "The Error" Mithyatva
20 Abhinavavarman I 1659-1699 "The Excellent" Varisthaloka
21 Laghuvarman 1699-1700 "The Shortlived" Alpuyusavarman
22 Smaramavarman I 1700-1800 "The Immortal" Amaravarman
23 Samulbanavarman II 1800-1810 "The Builder" Gharakarakavarman
24 Suryavarman IV 1810-1840 "The Golden" Kanakamayanara
25 Samhananopetavarman II 1840-1885 "The Great" Dvitiyakaäbhinava
26 Nirupaplavavarman II 1885-1923 "The Excellent" Varisthaloka
27 Samhananopetavarman II 1923-1950 "The Awesome" Bhimavarman
28 Balavanavarman I 1950-1988 "The Cultured" Vyutpattimataloka
29 Samhananopetavarman III 1988-1997 "The Musical" Svaraloka
30 Chakravarman I 1997-present "The Guru" Gharakarakavarman

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