This past Monday, October 23, was a national holiday. October 23 is the day King Chulalongkorn died and the Thai people remember his accomplishments and kingdom by paying homage to him all day.
The worshipping is set up throughout the country and in three major locations within Bangkok: the statue of him in front of the parliament building, another one in Lumpini Park, and Wat Benchamabophit – the temple in which Chulalongkorn served as a monk during his younger years.
Chulalongkorn was truly a monumental king in the history of Thailand. He barred Thailand from European rule during a critical time when both the French and British were colonizing Southeast Asia, modernized the government by adding a cabinet, abolished slavery, and built Thailand’s first railroad.
My school, Chulalongkorn University, was founded in 1917, seven years after his death in 1910.