April 4, 2015
Coronation Day (วันฉัตรมงคล-wan chat-mong-kol) When the people of the Kingdom of Thailand, get the chance to pay their respects to “Their King”
This annual event that had been taking place for 80 years ceased in 2017 the year after the late King’s death
When: Annually on the 5th May (Public Holiday)
Where: Grand Palace in Bangkok and Across the Country
His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej was the ninth King of the Chakri Dynasty and on the 5th May each year the people of this grateful nation celebrate their Kings coronation. While the King began his reign on the 9th June 1946 he was not crowned until the 5th May 1950. In doing so he was the first King of Thailand to have a coronation ceremony, prior to this there was a private function only attended by royalty and high ranking officials, the King chose to celebrate his crowning with his people and so became the first king to break with a centuries old tradition and have a public coronation.
His late majesty is referred to as King Rama IX in English, while the Thai people refer to him as Nai Luang or Phra Chao Yu Hua (ในหลวง or พระเจ้าอยู่หัว: both mean “the King” or “Lord Upon our Heads”). He is also called Chao Chiwit (“Lord of Life”) and is both the longest serving monarch in Thai history and the world’s present longest serving head of state.
The celebrations are actually over 3 days with the two days leading up to the 5th May each year held in private.
On the 3rd May the king would have performed a merit-making ceremony at the Audience Hall of Amarindra in tribute to the Kingdoms past kings accompanied by Buddhist monks who perform a requiem on the royal ashes of the deceased kings.
On the 4th May; the Coronation Ceremonies begin with the proclamation of the Coronation Day read by the Chief of Brahmin priests, followed by an evening of Buddhist rituals.
Finally on the 5th May; food is offered to monks, followed by a celebration of the Royal Regalia. At noon the Army and Navy fire a 21-gun salute in honour of the king. It is also on this day, His Majesty the King presents the royal awards to the people who have made a valuable contribution to the country and finally his health permitting, he will address the many thousands of people who travel from all over the Kingdom to see their King.
Why do you see the colour yellow every where and especially on this day?
Here in Thailand superstition, faith and astrology go hand in hand, in the later Hindu mythology teaches that each day is watched over by a particular god who also represents a particular celestial body. In the Thai tradition, each of these gods (celestial bodies) is represented by a particular colour, and so each day of the week is allocated both a lucky and unlucky colour. These same colours are used for our birthday colours. For example, King Bhumibol was born on Monday, so through-out the Kingdom on this day yellow will be seen every-where, in flowers, flags (including the King’s own flag), bunting and in the peoples clothing.
To see what is your Colour of the day, Unlucky colour, Celestial Body, God of the day and Unlucky day click on here
The love and reverence the Thai people have for the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej and the monarchy in general is often difficult for outsiders to fully comprehend, but it is there for all to witness in the faces of its people, when they come to pay their respects to “Their King” on this most special of days.
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