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Shwebo Palace
Shwebo Palace
Shwebo is located in Myanmar
Location in Burma
Coordinates: 22°34′0″N 95°42′0″E / 22.56667°N 95.70000°E / 22.56667; 95.70000
Country  Myanmar
Region  Sagaing Region
District Shwebo
Founded 29 February 1752
 • Ethnicities Burmans
 • Religions Theravada Buddhism
Time zone UTC6:30 (MST)

Shwebo (Burmese: ရွှေဘိုမြို့ [ʃwèbò mjo̰]) is a city in Sagaing Region, 110 km north-west of Mandalay between the Irrawaddy and the Mu rivers. The city was the origin of the Konbaung Dynasty, established by King Alaungpaya in 1752, that was the dominant political force in Burma after the mid-18th century. It served as Alaungpaya's capital from 1752 to 1760.


Alaungpaya's Tomb

Up to 1752, Shwebo was a village, called Moksobo (Burmese: မုဆိုးဘို [moʊʔ sʰó bò]; lit. "Hunter Chief") of about 300 houses.[1] It lies near the site of the ancient Pyu city-state of Hanlin.[2] On 29 February 1752, the chief of the village Aung Zeya founded the Konbaung Dynasty to resist the upcoming invasion of Lower Burma-based Hanthawaddy forces. Aung Zeya, who also assumed the royal title of Alaungpaya, gained the allegiance of 46 surrounding villages, and organized defenses building a stockade and digging a moat around Moksobo. He renamed his village, Shwebo (lit. Golden Chief).[1] Over the next eight years, Alaungpaya led the reunification of Burma with Shwebo as his capital.

Shwebo lost its status as capital after Alaungpaya's death in 1760. The successor Naungdawgyi moved the capital to Sagaing closer to the Irrawaddy river. Nonetheless, Shwebo continued to be an important region throughout the Konbaung era (1752–1885), providing a disproportionate share of soldiers that served in Konbaung's armies. The region was usually held as an appanage by the most senior princes, usually the crown prince. It was to Shwebo that Prince of Mindon went in 1853 to raise the standard of rebellion in his successful bid to overthrow his half brother Pagan.[2]

Names of Shwebo[edit]

Shwebo is famous for its five names. Five titles had been conferred to the city namely:[2]

  1. Moksobo (မုဆိုးဘို), its original name
  2. Yadana-Theinhka (ရတနာသိင်္ဃ)[3]
  3. Konbaung (ကုန်းဘောင်)
  4. Yangyi-Aung (ရန်ကြီးအောင်), and
  5. Shwebo (ရွှေဘို), its modern name.

Most of the people knows above names but the name "အယုစြ်ဇပူရ" and "မြေဘုံသာ" ("Ayuhcyajpuur" and "Myaybhonesar") are rarely known.



Shwebo received 4.37 inches (111 mm) of rainfall on 19 October 2011. It was the record breaking rainfall within 24 hours of October for past 48 years. The previous record was 3.84 inches (98 mm) of 24 October 1993.[4]


A view of Shwebo-Myitkyina Highway Road

Shwebo is served by Myanmar Railways's Mandalay-Myitkyina railway line. The city is best reached by pickup truck or bus as the roads from Mandalay and Monywa are in reasonably good shape. There are highway express buses from Yangon to Shwebo. Shwebo also lies on Mandalay-Myitkyina Union Express Road.


As with Monywa, the city is a trade center for agricultural produce, especially beans, rice and sesame from the surrounding plains between the Mu River and the Ayeyarwady River.

The major tourist attractions in Shwebo, although few tourists make the journey and facilities are very limited, are its numerous Buddhist temples, and the reconstruction of Alaungpaya's palace. The city is still surrounded by its ancient moat. There are many pagodas, such as Shwetaza Buddha Image and Myodaung Pagoda.

Moreover, tourists can visit Hanlin, the ground of ancient Pyu City. Hanlin is one hour drive from Shwebo. It is one of UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Sites.

In the very hot summer, people who live in Shwebo believe that rain comes when people bring the Shwetaza Buddha Image around the town.[citation needed]


There are five Basic Education High Schools in Shwebo. The town is home to the Shwebo University and Shwebo Government Technological College. Government Technological College (Shwebo) was established on 20 January 2007. It is situated in the north-east of Shwebo, about 3 miles (4.8 km), and in the east of Shwebo-Myitkyina Mahabyuha Road, about 1.14 miles (1.83 km)

Famous places[edit]

Myodaung Pagoda

At the time of building the Shwebo City, the King Alaungpaya built seven places;

  1. The Shwechattho Pagoda built in the place where the King Alaungpaya was born
  2. The city
  3. The Mahananda Lake (မဟာနန္ဒာကန်တော်)
  4. The auspicious ground
  5. The central drum (Bahosidaw)
  6. The place for nine city guardian spirits
  7. Shwebo Palace (Shwebonyadana Mingala Nandaw)
  8. Myodaung Pagoda (မြို့ထောင့်စေတီ)
  9. Tomb of Alaungphaya
  10. Shwetaza Buddha Image
  11. The auspicious ground (Maha Aung Myay)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b GE Harvey (1925). "Shan Migration (Ava)". History of Burma. London: Frank Cass & Co. Ltd. pp. 219–220.
  2. ^ a b c Bird, George W (1897). "Wanderings in Burma". England: F J Bright & Son. pp. 328, 329, 332.
  3. ^ Pe, Hla; Anna J. Allott; John Okell (1963). "Three 'Immortal' Burmese Songs". Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. Cambridge University Press on behalf of School of Oriental and African Studies. 26 (3): 563. doi:10.1017/s0041977x00070324. JSTOR 611566.
  4. ^[permanent dead link] Page 10 Col 2

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Capital of Burma
29 February 1752 – 26 July 1760
Succeeded by

Coordinates: 22°34′N 95°42′E / 22.567°N 95.700°E / 22.567; 95.700