Special thanks to the Museum for their gracious permission to photograph these objects.

Inscription Stele

National Museum, Bangkok

This inscription, bearing a date of 1292, records the biography of King Ramkamhaeng the Great of Thailand. It is traditionally but controversially attributed to the king himself. Ramkamhaeng was the second son of the founder of the Sukhothai state, inventor of the Thai alphabet, patron of Theravada Buddhism, and enlightened ruler whose personal diplomacy (he is thought to have visited China in 1299) kept Thailand allied to China and free of Mongol conquest. The famous Sawankhalok ceramic ware, the secrets of whose production were taught to the Thais by potters from China, is one result of his trade and diplomatic initiatives.

The inscription is considered by some scholars to be a much later writing. Be that as it may, it is one of the few sources of information that we have about this semilegendary monarch and Thai culture hero.