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THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART- 52

AYUTTHAYA PERIOD OF THAILAND

A period of history of THAILAND started in 1351 AD and lasted in 1767 AD was located on a small island city of AYUTTHAYA encircled by three rivers . You will be surprised to know that the name AYUTTHAYA was derived from the INDIAN holy city of AYODHYA where LORD RAMA had taken birth as an incarnation of LORD VISHNU as one of the greatest Epics of the SANSKRIT language , the RAMAYANA depicts . The first ruler of this kingdom of AYUTTHAYA was the King UTHONG whose period ranged from 1351 AD to 1369 AD . His two main contributions to the THAI history were as follows : 1. THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THERAVADA BUDDHISM AS OFFIAL RELIGION OF THAILAND ; and 2. THE COMPILATION OF DHARMASASTRA ( a legal code based on the Hindu sources and the traditional Thai customs ) . His aim was to differentiate his Kingdom from the neighbouring HINDU Kingdom of ANGKOR of CAMBODIA . And the result was that the DHARMASASTRA remained a tool of the THAI law until late in the 19th century . Thus , due to its defensible location and the well established law , AYUTTHAYA quickly became a powerful Kingdom — politically and economically . And this period of THAI history is truly known as the golden age of all-round development including that of THAI literature , Arts and Trades . The trades with the East and the West developed equally . Not only that the period is also considered as ‘ golden age of medicine in THAILAND ‘ as the period saw enormous progress in the field of medicine also .

DUARTE FERNANDES AND AYUTTHAYA KINGDOM

DUARTE FERNANDES was the first EUROPEAN diplomat and explorer from PORTUGAL who established diplomatic relations with THAILAND . In 1511 AD , he led a diplomatic mission to AYUTTHAYA Kingdom after the conquest of MALACCA . You will again be surprised to know that DUARTE FERNANDES was a PORTUGUESE tailor . He was a NEW CHRISTIAN , a classification of CHRISTIANITY used to describe people of MOORISH or JEWISH heritage . In September 1509 AD , he traveled to MALACCA as a part of his first expedition of DIOGO LOPES de SEQUEIRA , a PORTUGUESE FIDALGO , sent to analyze the trade potential in MADAGASCAR and MALACCA . But due to rising differences among the travelers on the question of delay in return of de SEQUEIRA back to PORTUGAL , or even some skirmishes , DUARTE FERNANDES and nineteen others of his expedition team were arrested in MALACCA . However , his amicable nature spared him the fate of the other conspirators . He , together with RUI de ARAUJO , started learning language and culture of the region and later became the de facto envoy of ALFONSO de ALBUQUERQUE , a PORTUGUESE general , admiral and statesman and who served as VICEROY OF PORTUGUESE INDIA from 1509 AD to 1515 AD and whose aim was only of three folds : 1. COMBATING ISLAM ; 2. SPREADING CHRISTIANITY ; and 3. SECURING THE TRADE OF SPICES BY ESTABLISHING A PORTUGUESE ASIAN EMPIRE . In 1511 AD , the PORTUGUESE conquered MALACCA . But when ALBUQUERQUE knew that the Kingdom of SIAM had claimed lands in MALACCA , he sent DUARTE FERNANDES in a diplomatic mission to the court of the King of SIAM called RAMATHIBODIll with three fold purposes : 1. TO EXPLAIN WHY PORTUGAL HAD SEIZED MALACCA ; 2. TO SHOW THE POWER OF PORTUGUESE EMPIRE ; and 3. TO OPEN THE TRADE RELATIONS BETWEEN PORTUGAL AND AYUTTHAYA . And it was FERNANDES with two CHINESE captains became the first EUROPEAN who landed on SIAM , had initiated contact between AYUTTHAYA AND PORTUGAL and at last concluded a treaty granting permission to trade in the AYUTTHAYA Kingdom .

BURMESE WARS AND THAILAND

The contact with the West proved boon for the Kingdom of AYUTTHAYA . As it became one of the most prosperous cities in Southeast ASIA . To GEORGE MODELSKI , a Professor of Political Science Emeritus at the UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON , AYUTTHAYA was estimated to be the largest city of the world in 1700 AD as such with a population of about one million . Trade and commerce flourished with the DUTCH and PORTUGUESE in the West and with the CHINESE and MALAYANS in the East . But in the middle of the 16th century , the Kingdom of AYUTTHAYA came under the repeated attacks by the TAUGOO DYNASTY of BURMA . The first BURMESE-SIAMESE war began in 1547 AD with the BURMESE invasion and the seige of AYUTTHAYA continued till 1549 AD but it failed . The second seige of AYUTTHAYA started in 1563 AD led by the BURMESE king BAYINNAUNG and forced the AYUTTHAYA king MAHA CHAKRAPHAT to surrender in 1564 AD . And the royal family was taken to BURMA . There after , MAHA CHAKRAPHAT’S second son MAHINTHRATHIRAT was installed to the throne of AYUTTHAYA as a Vassal king of BURMA . However , in 1568 AD MAHINTHRATHIRAT revolted against the King of BURMA as soon as his father returned from BAGO , BURMA as a BUDDHIST MONK . In 1569 AD after third seige , BAYINNAUNG made MAHATHAMMARRACHATHIRAT as his Vassal king of AYUTTHAYA .

But after the death of the BURMESE king BAYINNAUNG in 1581 AD , NARESUAN the THAI king proclaimed independence of AYUTTHAYA in 1584 . However , the THAI fought repeated invasion of the BURMESE king from 1584 AD to 1593 AD . And in a dreaded battle during the fourth seige of AYUTTHAYA by the BURMESE , the BURMESE king MINGYI SWA was slew by NARESUAN . NARESUAN was a so powerful THAI king that he attacked BURMA and the BURMESE – SIAMESE war continued from 1594 AD to 1605 AD in which THAI captured the TANINTHARYI region as far as MOTTAMA in 1595 AD and LAN NA in 1602 AD . Moreover , AYUTTHAYA’S influences considerably increased and extended upto the MALAYA Peninsula , ANDAMAN ( presently in INDIA ) and ANKOR-VHAT Kingdom ( presently located in CAMBODIA/KOMPUCHIA ) . But in the 18th century the power of the AYUTTHAYA Kingdom started declining . Under the powerful KONBAUNG DYNASTY , the BURMESE people launched several attacks on AYUTTHAYA in the 1750s and the 1760s . And ultimately in 1767 AD after several months of seige , the BURMESE entered into AYUTTHAYA , ransacked the city and brutally burned it down . And the last AYUTTHAYA king EKKATHAT with the royal family fled away and later on died due to starvation after ten days of his departure from the city as such .

NOTE : THE SOURCES OF THE BLOG ARE TEXT BOOKS AND OTHER WRITTEN MATERIALS ON THE SUBJECT .

TO BE CONTINUED ……………………..

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Published by arbind kumar

I had been a researcher. Presently in service.

16 thoughts on “THE WORLD CIVILIZATIONS AND INDIA , PART- 52

  1. Many mythological cities of India are still there. Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, has written extensively on the subject in his book A Glimpse of World History. Nice to read something on this subject today again after years thanks

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