//What is Chakri Memorial Day in Thailand?

What is Chakri Memorial Day in Thailand?

What is Chakri Day in Thailand, and why should you learn about it?

During Chakri Day, Thailand royal family members and the rest of the population take time to commemorate the Chakri Dynasty’s first king, King Rama I. It’s a day to celebrate and remember the peace and overall success that King Rama I brought to Thailand, including his decision to move its capital to Bangkok.

Learning about Chakri Day’s meaning will give you a good look at Thailand’s past, which in turn offers you insight into the country’s culture today. And as many language-learners can vouch for, understanding a country’s culture is a vital step in mastering the language.

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make this learning experience both fun and informative as we delve into the specifics of the Chakri Day holiday.

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1. What is Chakri Memorial Day?

This is the day to commemorate the grace of King Rama I who ascended the throne and moved the capital to Bangkok. This day is regarded as the anniversary of the Chakri Dynasty.

King Rama I is the first king of the Chakri Dynasty. He had many missions at the same time. The most important mission was to protect the kingdom as well as to revive the Thai culture. During his reign, he led the troops into battle and protected the country from every invasion from Myanmar. In addition, he cherished the religion by constructing and restoring temples which had been damaged by the war. That period was regarded as one of peace and solidarity.

2. When is Thailand’s Chakri Day?

The Capital City

Each year, Thais celebrate Chakri Memorial Day on April 6.

3. Reading Practice: How is Chakri Day Celebrated?

Showing Respect

How is Chakri Day celebrated? Read the Thai text below to find out (you can find the English translation directly below it).


ธรรมเนียมของวันจักรีในทุกๆปีคือ กษัตริย์องค์ปัจจุบัน พร้อมด้วยพระบรมวงศานุวงศ์ จะเป็นประธานในพิธีทางศาสนา เพื่อบำเพ็ญกุศลให้กษัตริย์ในราชวงศ์ ณ วัดพระแก้ว จากนั้นก็เสด็จไป วางพวงมาลา ณ พระบรมราชานุสาวรีย์ของรัชกาลที่ 1 ที่สะพานพระพุทธยอดฟ้า โดยนายกรัฐมนตรีและข้าราชการชั้นผู้ใหญ่ เข้าร่วมพิธีวางพวงมาลาและบำเพ็ญกุศลด้วย
ปัจจุบัน ทั้งมูลนิธิ ส่วนราชการ และภาคเอกชนได้ร่วมกันจัดงานสัปดาห์เฉลิมพระเกียรติ โดยการจัดกิจกรรมเพื่อเฉลิมพระเกียรติและเป็นพระราชกุศล เปิดโอกาสให้ประชาชนได้มีส่วนร่วม เช่น ช่วยสนับสนุนการดำเนินงานตามโครงการพระราชดำริ ปลูกป่า สร้างบ้านให้ผู้ยากไร้ เป็นต้น ถือเป็นการช่วยเสริมสร้างความสามัคคีของคนในชาติได้เป็นอย่างดี

The tradition on Chakri Day each year is that the current king along with the royal figures host religious ceremony to pay respect to previous kings in the dynasty at the Royal Palace temple. Then, they go to lay a wreath at the Monument of King Rama I at the Phra Phuttha Yodfa Bridge. The wreath laying and charitable event are attended by the Prime Minister and senior officials.

Nowadays, foundations, government agencies, and private sectors cooperate to organize the Week of Honor by organizing activities to honor the royal family and make merit for them. The general public is allowed to participate in several activities. For example, they can help by sponsoring the King’s project, plant trees in the forest, and build houses for the poor. These can greatly help strengthen the unity of the nation.

4. Additional Information: Thailand’s Capital Changes

Since the establishment of Thailand, there have been fifty-two kings and the capital has changed three times from Sukhothai: to Ayutthaya, Thon Buri, and Bangkok, respectively. There have been six dynasties up to the current Chakri Dynasty.

Thon Buri, the capital before Bangkok, wasn’t a suitable location for strategic reasons. It was located on both banks of the river, making it a difficult place to transport weapons to and to protect. Also, the existing palace had limited space and couldn’t be extended further. In contrast, the current capital Bangkok is in a suitable location for a battle. Hence, the capital was moved there eventually.

5. Must-know Vocab

Following Traditions

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for Chakri Memorial Day!

กรุงเทพฯ (grung-thêep) — “Bangkok”
เคารพ (khao-róp) — “respect”
จำได้ (jam-dâi) — “remember
วันจักรี (wan-jàk-grii) — “Chakri Memorial Day”
ประเพณี (bprà-phee-nii) — “tradition”
รัชกาลที่ 1 (rát-chá-gaan thîi-nùeng) — “King Rama I”
กษัตริย์ (gà-sàt) — “king”
ราชวงศ์ (râat-chá-wong) — “dynasty”
ราชวงศ์จักรี (râat-chá-wong jàk-grii) — “Chakri Dynasty”
ขึ้นครองราชย์ (khûen-khraawng-râat) — “be enthroned”
เมืองหลวง (muueang-lǔuang) — “capital city”

To hear each word pronounced, check out our Chakri Memorial Day vocabulary list. Here, you’ll find each word accompanied by an audio of its pronunciation.

Conclusion

What do you think about Chakri Memorial Day in Thailand? Has your country also changed its capital like Thailand did? Let us know in the comments!

We hope you enjoyed learning about Chakri Memorial Day with us. If so, you can visit us at ThaiPod101.com for more information on Thai culture and the Thai language. We offer an array of insightful blog posts, free vocabulary lists, and on online community to discuss lessons with fellow Thai learners. You can also upgrade to Premium Plus to take advantage of a one-on-one learning experience with our MyTeacher program!

At ThaiPod101.com, we hope to make learning Thai both fun and informative. Know that all of your hard work will pay off, and someday you’ll be speaking Thai like a native! We wish you the best in your Thai language-learning journey!

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