Today, on 26th June, we are celebrating the birthday of one of Thailand’s greatest poets: Sunthorn Phu. Although he was born in the late 18th Century, his work is still influential even today. I have already talked a number of times about his work. (I will give you some links to these blogs in a moment.) Today I want to introduce a story that he wrote together with King Rama II, King Rama II and other great poets of the time. It is called “The Story of Khun Chang Khun Phan”. This is an important piece of work that you should read in order to better understand life and culture in Thailand. It is a story of love and war, drama and horror, and love and tragedy. It is probably a forerunner of all modern soap operas.
The story is based in Suphan Buri and other locations, and when I was there recently, I was excited to visit a replica of Khun Chang’s house. This traditional style house can be seen in the grounds of Wat Pa Lelai. The house is free to visit and you can wander around the rooms inside. Also in the temple grounds, you can see a series of wall paintings which depict scenes from this great epic. The attention to detail is amazing and there is a lot you can learn by studying these paintings. Tomorrow I am going to give you a synopsis of “The Story of Khun Chang Khun Phan” and illustrate with the pictures I took at this temple.
Some of my other blogs about Sunthon Phu: