via Bangkok Post, 22 Feb 2019 and other sources: A private collector from Thailand returns over 100 artifacts to the Fine Arts Department. It is not stated how the artifacts came to his possession.
Collector Thammarit Jira has donated 104 historical artifacts dating back as far as 4,300 years to the government for safekeeping as national treasures.
They were handed over at the Bangkok National Museum on Friday, where they were accepted by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.
“These ancient objects are very precious and useful for the study of archaeological subjects and Thai history… This is a good example, and will encourage Thai people, including younger people, to love and protect our national treasures,” Gen Prayut said.
The prime minister said Mr Thammarit’s action should inspire other collectors to follow suit.
Re: “Special talk and seminars on the archaeology of Ban Chiang to commemorate 185 years of Thai-US diplomatic relations”, September 27, Foreign Ministry advertorial.
Your issue of September 27 included a report on a lecture delivered by Dr JC White on the archaeological site of Ban Chiang that contained two errors. It stated that Dr White was a member of the excavation team at Ban Chiang in 1974-5. I was, but she was not.
It also states that Ban Chiang was the centre of a Stone Age civilisation at around 5,000BC. As your article rightly notes, HM King Bhumibol asked during his visit to Ban Chiang if the human bones had been dated, and hearing that they had not, encouraged that this should be done. I have radiocarbon-dated the human bones from Ban Chiang. The earliest is about 1,500BC, not 5,000BC as stated.
Research professor, University of Otago, New Zealand
via The Nation, 27 September 2018: This talk happened just before IPPA last week.
On the occasion of the 185th Anniversary of Diplomatic Relations between Thailand and the United States, the Department of American and South Pacific Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand, the Ban Chiang National Museum of the Department of Fine Arts, and the Department of Archaeology, Silpakorn University, in collaboration with the Institute for Southeast Asian Archaeology (ISEAA), the United States of America, will organise activities to further promote Thai – US cooperation on the archaeology of Ban Chiang in Bangkok and UdonThani Province during 19 – 21 September 2018. Representatives from relevant government agencies, academics, students, professionals from tourism industry, media, and the general public are expected to attend.
A paper published in Science analyses the genomes of ancient Southeast Asian DNA and detected three distinct waves of migration into Southeast Asia beginning with hunter-gatherers around 45,000 years ago, followed by the Neolithic and the introduction of agricultural practices some 4,500 years ago, and a migration associated with the Bronze age, which reached Myanmar 3,000 years ago, Vietnam 2,000 years ago and Thailand in the last 1,000 years.
Ancient genomes document multiple waves of migration in Southeast Asian prehistory
Science 17 May 2018:
Southeast Asia is home to rich human genetic and linguistic diversity, but the details of past population movements in the region are not well known. Here, we report genome-wide ancient DNA data from eighteen Southeast Asian individuals spanning from the Neolithic period through the Iron Age (4100–1700 years ago). Early farmers from Man Bac in Vietnam exhibit a mixture of East Asian (southern Chinese agriculturalist) and deeply diverged eastern Eurasian (hunter-gatherer) ancestry characteristic of Austroasiatic speakers, with similar ancestry as far south as Indonesia providing evidence for an expansive initial spread of Austroasiatic languages. By the Bronze Age, in a parallel pattern to Europe, sites in Vietnam and Myanmar show close connections to present-day majority groups, reflecting substantial additional influxes of migrants.