Sri Satchanalai

Sri Satchanalai Historical Park

Sri Satchanalai
Geography

Sri Satchanalai no longer has independent status and is now part of the city of Sukhothai. It is located on the right bank of the Yom River, about 70 kilometers from the old town of Sukhothai on the way to Uttaradit. In earlier times there was a road connecting these two cities.

The city is surrounded on three sides by three rows of walls. On the side of the river there is only a row of walls. Seen from the outside, Sri Satchanalai is about 100-120 meters wide and 1800 acres in size.

A long chain of hills runs through the northern part of the city, on the two peaks of which Wat Khao Suwan Kiri and Wat Phanom Ploeng are located. Sri Satchanalai is also known for the rapids in the Yom River called “kaeng Luang”

History

In the 11th century there was an ancient city called “Chalieng” which was no less than 900 years old. According to Prince Damrong Rachanupab, the city center of Chalieng was probably around Wat Phra Sri Rattanamaha That, which was about one kilometer south of Sri Satchanalai.

During the Sukhothai period, Sri Satchanalai served as the second capital after Sukhothai. For this reason, the two cities were mentioned together as sri Satchanalai Sukhothai, as it is written in the three stone inscriptions, the stone inscription Ramkhamhaeng, the inscription Wat Sri Chum and the inscription Nakorn Chum. Sri satchanalai was the crown prince’s residence for a period during the 4th reign of Sukhothai.

The city gradually lost its importance. In the Ayutthaya period, Sri Sat Chanalai was under the administration of Ayutthaya and was called Sawankalok.

Art in Sri Satchanalai

Art areas in Sri Satchanalai are mostly from the Sukhothai style. Several Stupas as well as Prang can be seen in temples that represent different styles. The lotus flower style, the rounded Sinhala style or the Sivichai – Sinhala style. The Prangs can only be visited in two temples, namely in wat Phra Sri Rattana Maha That and Wat Chao chan.

The Buddha statues mostly belong to the Sukhothai period. Other found art objects can be found in the form of rishi, angels, people, animals or imaginary animals, as well as pottery and earthenware.

Attractions in Sri Satchanalai

A total of 137 historical cities can be found in this city. Noteworthy are Wat Chang Lom, Wat Chedi Chet Thaew, Wat Nang Phaya, Wat Kao Panom Ploeng and Wat Kao Suwan kiri within the city wall. Wat Phra Sri Rattana Maha That Chalieng, Wat Chao Chan and a ceramic kiln outside the city can also be mentioned.

Wat Chang Lom

The start of construction of this temple – according to the stone inscription – was fixed on 1285 and was done on behalf of King Ramkhamhaeng. Construction ended in 1291.

The most important object in this temple is a large bell-shaped Stupa in the Sinhala style made of laterite. The square footprint of 31 meters has three recessed stands, decorated with figures such as elephants, niches containing stucco Buddha statues and a balustrade. The front staircase leads to the main part of the stupa. A 50 meter long wall closes the Stupa down on four sides. Real entrances are the front and back doors, while the other two are just facades. In front of the Stupa you can still find the foundation of a rough Vihan and ruins of other small stupas and a small Vihan.

Wat Chedi Chet Thaew

is about 30 meters south of Wat Chang Lom. The temple stands behind two rows of walls and has four entrances. The most important part of the wat is a Stupa in the lotus flower style on a square base of 13.5 meters. Around this Stupa are smaller Stupas of different styles. Notable among them is one on the north side, which maintains a niche with a Buddha figure under the Sri Vichai style Naga. In front of the stupa is a large Vihan, surrounded by a low wall. Outside this wall are the ruins of a Bot and a Mondop.

Wat Nang Phaya

is the furthest south of Sri Satchanalai city. The temple is surrounded by a laterite wall with three entrances to the south and east. A sight in the wat is a base of 16.5 meters. A veranda leads to the interior of the stupa. In front of the round stupa there is a large Vihan made of laterite, the main wall of which still has stucco decorations with floral motifs from the Ayutthaya period.

Wat Khao Phanom Ploeng

was built on a 20 meter high hill north of the city. Laterite stairs lead to the temple. A Sinhala-style Stupa with a pavilion and Vihan in front of it is a historical attraction in this temple. Behind the main Stupa there are three smaller Stupas in a row. Another Stupa is located between the pavilion and the Vihan. It has a laterite niche and was known among the locals as the shrine of “Chaomae La – ong Samlie”.

Wat Khao Suwan Kiri

is located on the second small hill, 28 meters high and north of the city, about 28 meters from Kao Phanom ploeng. A round Stupa in Sinhala style on a square base area of ​​44 meters wide is considered to be worth seeing. The stupa has niches on four sides. In front of the main stupa there is a Vihan and behind it there are other smaller stupas in Sinhala style.

Wat Phra Sri Rattana Mahathat Chalieng

This temple is located on the Yom River, about 1 kilometer south of the city of Sri Satchanalai. The locals call it Wat Phra Prang.The main monument of this temple is a large laterite Prang, which was probably built on the original Khmer Prang during the reign of King Borom Trai Lokanart in the Ayutthaya period.

The first restoration took place in the time of King Borom Kot. A large Vihan in front of the Prang contains the main Buddha statue, built in the Sukhothai style. To the right of this figure is another stepping brick and stucco buddha apparently from the earlier Sukhothai period. It is considered to be one of the finest works of art to date from this era.

There are several Stupas around the Prang and Vihan. The whole group, including a niche with a Buddha figure under the Naga, is surrounded by a wall of large blocks of laterite, decorated with woodwork. The western and eastern gates are made up of four-faced Brahma heads in the Bayon style. There are also figures of Devas, dancing girls and Rahu taking in the moon. All of these figures are hallmarks of Khmer art.

In front of the east gate is a Bot that was built on the old Bot foundation. This Bot stands behind two monks’ apartments known as “Phra Ruang Phra Lue”. The buildings probably represent King Ramkhamhaeng and Phraya Lithai. Behind the Prang there is a large octagonal Stupa foundation in rubble, which clearly shows the Mon style. This Stupa is called “Phra mutao”.

Another Vihan behind the large Stupa, which locals refer to as the Vihan of the Second Brothers, contains two large stucco Buddha statues. Hence its name. This temple probably functioned as a religious place of the Khmer in the past. It was later taken over by the Thais, who adapted the building for their purpose and added some structures.

Wat Chao Chan

is located west of Wat Phra Sri Rattana Mahathat Chalieng. The Khmer style Prang probably dates from the time of King Jayavarman VII and was used as a shrine for Mahayana Buddhism. However, the temple became a religious site of Theravad Buddhism in the Sukhothai period.

Ceramic kiln

The ceramic kilns found in Sri Satchanalai are found in Ban Pa Yang and Ban Koh Noi.

  • The kiln in Ban Pa Yang is about 500 meters north of the city wall in the district of Ban Pa Yang. 21 closed kilns had already been found here, mostly 2-4 meters in height. This type of closed kiln is called Tao Pratun. It is made of brick and has a shape that resembles a ship’s roof. Usually such a stove is 2 meters wide, 5 meters long and is divided into three parts, namely as a place to place pots and plates, chimney and stove part, which can be up to 1,200 – 1,600 c. can heat up. Stoneware is produced here.
  • The kiln in Ban Koh Noi is located near the Yom River, 4 kilometers north of the kiln in Ban Pa Yang, in the Ban Koh Noi district. Up to now around 150 kilns of two shapes have been found in the vicinity of 250 kilometers. Tao Pra Thun for the production of the stoneware mentioned above and Tao Ta Krap. This type of oven can be both round and square. It is about 1-2 meters wide and is divided into two parts. The upper part is used as an installation room, the lower part is the stove. Between these two parts there is a plate full of holes, round or square depending on the shape of the oven. The heat comes up through these holes. Since the heat of the oven is limited to 600-800 c, the oven is suitable for the production of earthenware.