The Grand Palace – Bangkok Period







Sukothai, Ayutthaya, Thornburi, and Bangkok. Those are the 4 main capitols of Siam/Thailand. Currently Bangkok is the capitol. It became the capitol in 1782 when King Rama 1 moved the capitol from Thornburi to Bangkok. Rama 1 established the Grand Palace and was used until the current King (King Rama 9) moved his residence to the Royal Palace. The Grand Palace is an expansive complex of many buildings.

There are two main areas, Wat Phra Kaew วัดพระเข้ว The Temple of the Emerald Buddha. This temple is the most important temple in Bangkok. The Emerald Buddha is the most important relic and has traveled from India to Ayutthaya to Thornburi and finally to its current place. The buddha image is so special that only His Majesty the King is allowed to do the ceremonial change of the clothes. Due to declining health the Crown Prince, Eldest son of the King, has been doing the ceremony for the previous years. The clothes change about 3 times a year. In addition there is the mortuary where the ashes of the previous 8 kings are kept. This building is opened to the public only 5 times a year. There is also a private temple for the royal family and the golden chedi is said to hold a piece of Buddhas breast bone. The temple area also has a model of Angor Wat, a temple in Cambodia that once belonged to Thailand because of changing borders. 

The second important part is the Chakri Meeting Hall which is incredibly famous and wrongly labeled the Grand Palace. The Meeting hall is only the center of the entire Grand Palace complex. 

The Chakri hall was built during the reign of the 5th King (King Mongkut – father of innovation and advancing the Thai society.). The hall was built in european style but the roof was later changed to reflect the traditional Thai architecture. It is often referred to as the Westerner with a Thai Hat. I was able to go inside the hall, but pictures are forbidden inside. Inside the Main door is the Kings thrown where meetings would be held with his subjects. To the left is where the Kings would meet with diplomats. The room is adorned with high ceilings and spectacular busts of other countries kings. Italy sent two busts of the King and Queen of Italy in Rose Quartz. On the right hand side is the wing where the Queen and concubines gather with other foreign women of diplomats. On the Walls of the wings hangs large portraits of Kings and queens of Thailand. The rugs and chairs were all imports from Europe. While I have been able to see the palace inside and out it is fascinating when one studies each kings influence and know what buildings where built when. In one corner is Chinese inspired buildings that were built by King Rama III. 

the 2nd and 3rd page of this album has only the temple and Grand palace!cpZZ3QQtppZZ24