The ruins of Phitsanulok

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Wang Chan. Source: Bangkok Post 20151029

The ruins of palace of a famous Ayutthaya king has revitalised the Thai city of Phitsanulok.

Wang Chan. Source: Bangkok Post 20151029

Wang Chan. Source: Bangkok Post 20151029

Diggin’ Phitsanulok’s prestigious past
Bangkok Post, 29 October 2015

The foundations are of Wang Chan, a palace where King Naresuan the Great of the Ayutthaya period once lived. It is believed the inner mansion was made of sandalwood, a fragrant wood called mai chan in Thai, hence the name of the palace. It is assumed that the palace was built during the early Ayutthaya period, during the reign of King Sam Phraya (Phra Barom Rajathirat II, 1424-1448). His successor, King Baromtrai Lokanat (1448-1488) expanded it to serve as a royal palace.

Wang Chan later served as the residence for many kings during the Ayutthaya period. It was also the birth place of King Naresuan the Great (1590-1605).

King Naresuan is one of Thailand’s most revered monarchs. He was known for his campaign to free Ayutthaya from the Burmese under the Toungoo Dynasty.

As Phitsanulok was a strategic city to cope with invaders from the north, all Ayutthaya’s viceroys were assigned to rule this city, including King Naresuan. However, King Naresuan did not appoint any viceroy. Phitsanulok was demoted and Wang Chan was neglected, particularly after the fall of Ayutthaya.

Full story here.

Prehistoric footprint found in Thailand?

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A possible prehistoric footprint found in Thailand’s Phitsanulok province? I’m not sure how this depression might be dated though, if it is at all possible. (Thanks to Andreas Hörstemeier for the link.)

Possible prehistoric footprint in Phu Hin Rong Kla National Park in Thailand, Bangkok Post 20110816

Ancient footprint found in rock
Bangkok Post, 16 August 2011
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More ancient kilns found

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6 April 2007 (The Nation) – There are two separate stories in this news story: the first is the discovery of two kilns in Phitsanulok province; the second is the discovery of ten 2,000-year-old graves in Nakhon Ratchasima province.

More ancient kilns found

The Mineral Resources Department (MRD) has unearthed two ancient pottery kilns in Phitsanulok’s Muang district, while local archaeologists in Nakhon Ratchasima yesterday found 10 ancient graves with human bones and artefacts dating back more than 2,000 years.

MRD director-general Apichai Chawacharoenphan said yesterday that two kilns had been found so far in an ongoing survey of Wat Tapakhaohai and the compound of its school in Tambon Hau Raw.

Ancient ovens found to have a magnetic appeal

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2 April 2007 (The Nation) – Magnetometry saves the day! Actually, no. Magnetometers have been used in archaeology for quite a while already. The magnetometers were used to detect two kilns from the Phitsanulok province in Thailand and are possibly related to kilns in Sukhothai province.

Ancient ovens found to have a magnetic appeal

Armed with hi-tech equipment and advanced technology, government archaeologists and surveyors are excavating two historic sites in Phitsanulok believed to contain more than 50 16th-century kilns.

The first site is an 11-rai plot at the Ta Pa Khao temple and school in Muang district. The other is at the school compound next to an 800-metre stretch of the Nan River. Two kilns were unearthed here in 1984, 3.5 metres below the surface.

The Fine Arts and Mineral Resources departments are conducting the joint excavation. It started on Saturday and should be completed on Sunday.