| THE META AGE (about 4,000 years ago):
The three major cultural centers existed in Vietnam are Phung Nguyen – Dong Son (The North), Long Thanh – Sa Huynh (The Centre) and Cau Sat, Doc Chua – Dong Nai (The North) from Bronze Age to Iron Age. These three major cultural centers had close and long mutual relationship, contributed to specific traditional culture of Vietnam. It’s unity in abundance.
THE VAN LANG NATION
During the Dong Son period, only one state had formed. The unified culture prevailing in this region stretched from the Sino-Vietnamese border to the northern banks of the Gianh River. The nation of the ancient Viet people existed as the Van Lang Nation, which was ruled by the Kings Hung.
THE AU LAC NATION
A few centuries later, An Duong Vuong founded the Au Lac Nation in the third century BC. Records of this nation can be found in the annals written by the Chinese historian, Xi Ma Tin. Remains of the Co Loa Citadel, which was built during the An Duong Vuong period, can still be seen today.
THE CHAMPA NATION
Champa's people, the Cham Malayo-Polynesian settlers from mainland Southeast Asia, appear to have reached the mainland from Borneo about the time of the Sa Huynh culture in the 1st and 2nd centuries BC. There are pronounced ceramic, industrial and funerary continuities with sites such as the Niah Caves in Sarawak, East Malaysia. Sa Huynh sites are rich in iron artifacts, by contrast with the Dong Son culture sites found in northern Vietnam and elsewhere in mainland Southeast Asia, where bronze artifacts are dominant.
The Sa Huynh culture is a late prehistoric metal age society on the central coast of Viet Nam. In 1909, about 200 jar burials were uncovered at Sa Huynh, a coastal village located south of Da Nang. Since then, many more burials have been found, at some 50 sites. The Sa Huynh shows a distinct regional Bronze Age culture, with its own styles of axes, daggers, and ornaments. Carbon dating has placed the Sa Huynh culture roughly the same time line with the Dong Son culture, that is about the first millennium BC. From about 200 AD, the central coast of Viet Nam was inhabited by the Chams, who had adopted elements of Indian political and religious culture. Recent researches by Vietnamese archaeologists has shown that the Chams are linguistic and cultural descendants of the Sa Huynh people. The uncovered artifacts show the Sa Huynh people were highly skilled craftsmen in the production of jewelry and ornaments made with hard stones and glass. Sa Huynh styled ornaments were also found in Thailand, Taiwan and Philippines suggesting they were traded with South East Asian neighbors, over land and maritime routes. Archaeologists also observe that iron seems to have been used by the Sa Huynh peoples when their Dong Son neighbors were still mostly using bronze.