Chronology of Thailand History

Siam during the Sukhothai period(late 13th. century)

     8th-13th Century Thais gradually migrated from south-western China into northern Thailand, when a major part of what is today's Thailand was controlled by the Mons and the Khmers.

     1238 King Si Inthrathit drove out the Khmers and established the first Thai Kingdom at Sukhothai.

     1275 King Ramkhamhaeng ascended the throne. He is credited with the invention of the Thai alphabet and the expansion of the realm of the Kingdom right down to the southern tip of Malay peninsula.

Siam during King Naresuan's reign(1590-1605)

     1350 A new Thai Kingdom sprang up at Ayutthaya near the Gulf of Thailand, supplanting Sukhothai's dominance.

     1569 Ayutthaya was captured by the Burmese for the first time. Fifteen years later, King Narusuan restored Thai independence.

     1656 King Nari was enthroned. He adopted a friendly policy towards foreigners, especially the Europeans, and Ayutthaya became a great metropolis of the world.

     1767 After a 15-month siege, Ayutthaya was again overrun by the Burmese in April. The city was burnt down. Temples and palaces were emptied of priceless treasures and many survivors were marched off to Burma as prisoners. In October, the capital was recovered by Phraya Tak, who was crowned as King Taskin with Thon Buri ( now part of Bangkok ) as capital.

Siam during early Bangkok period(1782-1851)

     1782 King Rama I. founded the Chakri dynasty and moved the capital across the Choa Phraya River to Bangkok.

     1851 King Mongkut, or Rama IV, was enthroned after 27 years as a Buddhist monk. The first monarch in Asia who mastered English, he set the country on the path to modernization.

     1868-1910 King Chulalongkorn continued his fathers reforms, leading Thailand steadily into the 20th century. He abolished the slavery system and succeeded in making Thailand the only south-eastern Asian country that averted Western colonialism.

     1932 A bloodless coup took place changing an absolute monarchy into a constitutional monarchy. In 1935, King Prajadhipok abdicated.

The present boundary of Thailand

     1946King Ananda Mahidol mysteriously died of a gunshot wound. His brother Bhumibol Adulyadej became the 9th King of the dynasty and has now surpassed his grandfather Chulalongkorn as the longest reigning King in Thai history. He has launched numerous projects in rural development and has been a stabilization factor in Thai politics. Under his reign, Thailand has made rapid progress in the economy and is emerging as a newly industrialized country.