Myanmar the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and known as Burma, is a country in Southeast Asia. Myanmar is bordered by India and Bangladesh to its west and Laos to its east and China to its north and northeast. To its south, about one third of Myanmar's total perimeter of 5,876 km forms an uninterrupted coastline of 1,930 km along the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea; the country's 2014 census counted the population to be 51 million people. As of 2017, the population is about 54 million. Myanmar is 676,578 square kilometres in size, its capital city is Naypyidaw, its largest city and former capital is Yangon. Myanmar has been a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations since 1997. Early civilisations in Myanmar included the Tibeto-Burman-speaking Pyu city-states in Upper Burma and the Mon kingdoms in Lower Burma. In the 9th century, the Bamar people entered the upper Irrawaddy valley and, following the establishment of the Pagan Kingdom in the 1050s, the Burmese language and Theravada Buddhism became dominant in the country.
The Pagan Kingdom fell. In the 16th century, reunified by the Taungoo dynasty, the country was for a brief period the largest empire in the history of Mainland Southeast Asia; the early 19th century Konbaung dynasty ruled over an area that included modern Myanmar and controlled Manipur and Assam as well. The British took over the administration of Myanmar after three Anglo-Burmese Wars in the 19th century and the country became a British colony. Myanmar was granted independence as a democratic nation. Following a coup d'état in 1962, it became a military dictatorship under the Burma Socialist Programme Party. For most of its independent years, the country has been engrossed in rampant ethnic strife and its myriad ethnic groups have been involved in one of the world's longest-running ongoing civil wars. During this time, the United Nations and several other organisations have reported consistent and systematic human rights violations in the country. In 2011, the military junta was dissolved following a 2010 general election, a nominally civilian government was installed.
This, along with the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and political prisoners, has improved the country's human rights record and foreign relations, has led to the easing of trade and other economic sanctions. There is, continuing criticism of the government's treatment of ethnic minorities, its response to the ethnic insurgency, religious clashes. In the landmark 2015 election, Aung San Suu Kyi's party won a majority in both houses. However, the Burmese military remains a powerful force in politics. Myanmar is a country rich in jade and gems, natural gas and other mineral resources. In 2013, its GDP stood at its GDP at US$221.5 billion. The income gap in Myanmar is among the widest in the world, as a large proportion of the economy is controlled by supporters of the former military government; as of 2016, Myanmar ranks 145 out of 188 countries in human development, according to the Human Development Index. Both the names Myanmar and Burma derive from the earlier Burmese Mranma, an ethnonym for the majority Bamar ethnic group, of uncertain etymology.
The terms are popularly thought to derive from "Brahma Desha" after Brahma. In 1989, the military government changed the English translations of many names dating back to Burma's colonial period or earlier, including that of the country itself: "Burma" became "Myanmar"; the renaming remains a contested issue. Many political and ethnic opposition groups and countries continue to use "Burma" because they do not recognise the legitimacy of the ruling military government or its authority to rename the country. In April 2016, soon after taking office, Aung San Suu Kyi clarified that foreigners are free to use either name, "because there is nothing in the constitution of our country that says that you must use any term in particular"; the country's official full name is the "Republic of the Union of Myanmar". Countries that do not recognise that name use the long form "Union of Burma" instead. In English, the country is popularly known as either "Burma" or "Myanmar". Both these names are derived from the name of the majority Burmese Bamar ethnic group.
Myanmar is considered to be the literary form of the name of the group, while Burma is derived from "Bamar", the colloquial form of the group's name. Depending on the register used, the pronunciation would be Myamah; the name Burma has been in use in English since the 18th century. Burma continues to be used in English by the governments of countries such as the United Kingdom. Official United States policy retains Burma as the country's name, although the State Department's website lists the country as "Burma" and Barack Obama has referred to the country by both names; the government of Canada has in the past used Burma, such as in its 2007 legislation imposing sanctions, but as of the mid-2010s uses Myanmar. The Czech Republic uses Myanmar, although its Ministry of Foreign Affairs mentions both Myanmar and Burma on its website; the United Nations uses Myanmar, as do the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Russia, China, Bangladesh, Norway and Switzerland. Most English-speaking international news media refer to the country by the name Myanmar, including the BBC, CNN, Al Jazeera and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation /Ra
Queens of Langkasuka
Queens of Langkasuka is a 2008 Thai historical fantasy adventure film directed by Nonzee Nimibutr, written by two-time S. E. A. Write Award winner Win Lyovarin. Known as "Pirates Of Langkasuka" in the UK, as "Legend of Langkasuka" in Australia and Canada, as "Legend of the Tsunami Warrior" in the US. Queen Hijau of Pattani faces overthrow by the rebel Prince Rawai, allied with pirate captain Black Raven; the pirates attempt to capture a huge cannon built by Dutchman Janis Bree and Chinese inventor Lim Kiam, but the Dutch ship carrying the cannon blows up and the cannons sink into the sea. Meanwhile, an orphaned sea gypsy boy named Pari lies in a fishing village, under attack by Black Raven's raiding parties; the boy, gifted in the magical art of Dulum, is taken by his uncle Anyar to learn the magical ways of the ocean from White Ray. However, the sage refuses to teach the boy. Pari is soon able to communicate with the marine life, he grows into manhood and fights against Black Raven's pirates. Black Raven, who a practitioner in the Dulum ocean magical arts, has been trying unsuccessfully to raise the huge cannon from the sea.
The local ruler, Queen Hijau, wants her own large cannon and seeks out Lim Kiam, whom she finds is living in the sea gypsy village. She sends away Princess Biru and Princess Ungu, they are under the protection of the fierce silat exponent Lord Yarang. Yarang comes under attack at the village by Black Raven's. Pari helps fight off the pirates, Yarang escapes. Princess Ungu was thought to have been killed, but she was rescued by Pari and taken to White Ray's remote island. A romance develops between Ungu and Pari, but Ungu is intended to marry the Prince of Pahang, an important ally of Langkasuka. Pari himself is still tortured by memories of the death of his childhood sweetheart at the hands of Black Raven's men. Pari encounters Black Ray, an evil, unstable alter ego of White Ray, begins to learn more about Dulum and the conflict between the black and white sides of the magic. All the forces - the rebel prince, the pirates, the ocean sorcerers, the queen and the princesses - battle for the sunken cannon.
During this battle, Black Raven uses a pair of whales to tow a raft with a heavy cannon into range of the castle walls. Pari - presumed to be dead - responds by rising from the ocean, standing on the back of a manta ray, he calls to the whales who slip their bonds and breach, landing on and destroying Black Raven's raft Jarunee Suksawat as Queen Hijau Jacqueline Apithananon as Princess Biru Anna Ris as Princess Ungu Chupong Changprung as Lord Yarang Ananda Everingham as Pari Sorapong Chatree as White Ray/Black Ray Jesdaporn Pholdee as Abdul Ghafur Muhiuddin Shah of Pahang Winai Kraibutr as Black Raven Jakkrit Phanichphatikram as Lim Kium Andre Machielsen as Janis Bree Preecha Katkham as Anyar Kunanek Naiyanaprasert as Pari Suwinit Panjamawat as Yarang's second in command Manassanan Patcharasopachai Mesini Keawratri Ake Oree as Prince Rawai Thiti Micheli Attaporn Theemakorn Suppakorn Kitsuwan Arisa Sontirod Kamol Luangrojkul Queens of Langkasuka, which went into production in 2005, was at first called Queens of Pattani, but the name was changed to avoid political connections to the South Thailand insurgency and Pattani separatism, to tie the story in with the legend of Langkasuka.
The film premiered at the 2008 Cannes Film Market to mixed reviews. Derek Elley of Variety said the film lacked at 133 minutes was too long. Maggie Lee of The Hollywood Reporter was more upbeat, praising the sumptuous costume design and action sequences, but said the film was too long. Based on the reception from the industry press, studio Sahamongkol Film International pushed for a shorter version of the film; the film's August 2008 release in Thai cinemas was postponed until October, with the director citing Thailand's unstable political atmosphere. A boost of confidence was given though, when the film was scheduled for the Venice Film Festival, where it would play in a special out-of-competition midnight screening. Queens of Langkasuka was the "gala opening" film for the 2008 Bangkok International Film Festival; the screenplay for Queens of Langkasuka was adapted by Win Lyovarin into the novel Bunga Pari released in 2008. Queens of Langkasuka Queens of Langkasuka on IMDb Puen yai jon salad at Rotten Tomatoes
Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, in proportions which can be varied to achieve varying mechanical and electrical properties. It is a substitutional alloy: atoms of the two constituents may replace each other within the same crystal structure. Bronze is an alloy containing copper, but instead of zinc it has tin. Both bronze and brass may include small proportions of a range of other elements including arsenic, phosphorus, aluminium and silicon; the distinction is historical. Modern practice in museums and archaeology avoids both terms for historical objects in favour of the all-embracing "copper alloy". Brass is used for decoration for its bright gold-like appearance, it is used in zippers. Brass is used in situations in which it is important that sparks not be struck, such as in fittings and tools used near flammable or explosive materials. Brass has higher malleability than zinc; the low melting point of brass and its flow characteristics make it a easy material to cast. By varying the proportions of copper and zinc, the properties of the brass can be changed, allowing hard and soft brasses.
The density of brass is 8.4 to 8.73 grams per cubic centimetre. Today 90% of all brass alloys are recycled; because brass is not ferromagnetic, it can be separated from ferrous scrap by passing the scrap near a powerful magnet. Brass scrap is transported to the foundry where it is melted and recast into billets. Billets are extruded into the desired form and size; the general softness of brass means that it can be machined without the use of cutting fluid, though there are exceptions to this. Aluminium makes brass more corrosion-resistant. Aluminium causes a beneficial hard layer of aluminium oxide to be formed on the surface, thin and self-healing. Tin has a similar effect and finds its use in seawater applications. Combinations of iron, aluminium and manganese make brass wear and tear resistant. To enhance the machinability of brass, lead is added in concentrations of around 2%. Since lead has a lower melting point than the other constituents of the brass, it tends to migrate towards the grain boundaries in the form of globules as it cools from casting.
The pattern the globules form on the surface of the brass increases the available lead surface area which in turn affects the degree of leaching. In addition, cutting operations can smear the lead globules over the surface; these effects can lead to significant lead leaching from brasses of comparatively low lead content. In October 1999 the California State Attorney General sued 13 key manufacturers and distributors over lead content. In laboratory tests, state researchers found the average brass key, new or old, exceeded the California Proposition 65 limits by an average factor of 19, assuming handling twice a day. In April 2001 manufacturers agreed to reduce lead content to 1.5%, or face a requirement to warn consumers about lead content. Keys plated with other metals are not affected by the settlement, may continue to use brass alloys with higher percentage of lead content. In California, lead-free materials must be used for "each component that comes into contact with the wetted surface of pipes and pipe fittings, plumbing fittings and fixtures."
On January 1, 2010, the maximum amount of lead in "lead-free brass" in California was reduced from 4% to 0.25% lead. The so-called dezincification resistant brasses, sometimes referred to as CR brasses, are used where there is a large corrosion risk and where normal brasses do not meet the standards. Applications with high water temperatures, chlorides present, or deviating water qualities play a role. DZR-brass is excellent in water boiler systems; this brass alloy must be produced with great care, with special attention placed on a balanced composition and proper production temperatures and parameters to avoid long-term failures. The high malleability and workability good resistance to corrosion, traditionally attributed acoustic properties of brass, have made it the usual metal of choice for construction of musical instruments whose acoustic resonators consist of long narrow tubing folded or coiled for compactness. Collectively known as brass instruments, these include the trombone, trumpet, baritone horn, tenor horn, French horn, many other "horns", many in variously-sized families, such as the saxhorns.
Other wind instruments may be constructed of brass or other metals, indeed most modern student-model flutes and piccolos are made of some variety of brass a cupronickel alloy similar to nickel silver/German silver. Clarinets low clarinets such as the contrabass and subcontrabass, are sometimes made of metal because of limited supplies of the dense, fine-grained tropical hardwoods traditionally preferred for smaller woodwinds. For the same reason, some low clarinets and contrabassoons feature a hybrid construction, with long, straight sections of wood, curved joints, and/or bell of metal; the use of metal avoids the risks of exposing wooden instruments to changes in temperature or humid
A cannon is a type of gun classified as artillery that launches a projectile using propellant. In the past, gunpowder was the primary propellant before the invention of smokeless powder in the 19th century. Cannon vary in caliber, mobility, rate of fire, angle of fire, firepower; the word cannon is derived from several languages, in which the original definition can be translated as tube, cane, or reed. In the modern era, the term cannon has fallen into decline, replaced by guns or artillery if not a more specific term such as mortar or howitzer, except for high calibre automatic weapons firing bigger rounds than machine guns, called autocannons; the earliest known depiction of cannon appeared in Song dynasty China as early as the 12th century, however solid archaeological and documentary evidence of cannon do not appear until the 13th century. In 1288 Yuan dynasty troops are recorded to have used hand cannons in combat, the earliest extant cannon bearing a date of production comes from the same period.
By 1326 depictions of cannon had appeared in Europe and immediately recorded usage of cannon began appearing. By the end of the 14th century cannon were widespread throughout Eurasia. Cannon were used as anti-infantry weapons until around 1374 when cannon were recorded to have breached walls for the first time in Europe. Cannon featured prominently as siege weapons and larger pieces appeared. In 1464 a 16,000 kg cannon known as the Great Turkish Bombard was created in the Ottoman Empire. Cannon as field artillery became more important after 1453 with the introduction of limber, which improved cannon maneuverability and mobility. European cannon reached their longer, more accurate, more efficient "classic form" around 1480; this classic European cannon design stayed consistent in form with minor changes until the 1750s. Cannon is derived from the Old Italian word cannone, meaning "large tube", which came from Latin canna, in turn originating from the Greek κάννα, "reed", generalised to mean any hollow tube-like object.
The word has been used to refer to a gun since 1326 in Italy, 1418 in England. Both Cannons and Cannon are correct and in common usage, with one or the other having preference in different parts of the English-speaking world. Cannons is more common in North America and Australia, while cannon as plural is more common in the United Kingdom; the cannon may have appeared as early as the 12th century in China, was a parallel development or evolution of the fire-lance, a short ranged anti-personnel weapon combining a gunpowder-filled tube and a polearm of some sort. Co-viative projectiles such as iron scraps or porcelain shards were placed in fire lance barrels at some point, the paper and bamboo materials of fire lance barrels were replaced by metal; the earliest known depiction of a cannon is a sculpture from the Dazu Rock Carvings in Sichuan dated to 1128, however the earliest archaeological samples and textual accounts do not appear until the 13th century. The primary extant specimens of cannon from the 13th century are the Wuwei Bronze Cannon dated to 1227, the Heilongjiang hand cannon dated to 1288, the Xanadu Gun dated to 1298.
However, only the Xanadu gun contains an inscription bearing a date of production, so it is considered the earliest confirmed extant cannon. The Xanadu Gun weighs 6.2 kg. The other cannon are dated using contextual evidence; the Heilongjiang hand cannon is often considered by some to be the oldest firearm since it was unearthed near the area where the History of Yuan reports a battle took place involving hand cannon. According to the History of Yuan, in 1288, a Jurchen commander by the name of Li Ting led troops armed with hand cannon into battle against the rebel prince Nayan. Chen Bingying argues there were no guns before 1259 while Dang Shoushan believes the Wuwei gun and other Western Xia era samples point to the appearance of guns by 1220, Stephen Haw goes further by stating that guns were developed as early as 1200. Sinologist Joseph Needham and renaissance siege expert Thomas Arnold provide a more conservative estimate of around 1280 for the appearance of the "true" cannon. Whether or not any of these are correct, it seems that the gun was born sometime during the 13th century.
References to cannon proliferated throughout China in the following centuries. Cannon featured in literary pieces. In 1341 Xian Zhang wrote a poem called The Iron Cannon Affair describing a cannonball fired from an eruptor which could "pierce the heart or belly when striking a man or horse, transfix several persons at once."By the 1350s the cannon was used extensively in Chinese warfare. In 1358 the Ming army failed to take a city due to its garrisons' usage of cannon, however they themselves would use cannon, in the thousands on during the siege of Suzhou in 1366; the Korean kingdom of Joseon started producing gunpowder in 1374 and cannon by 1377. Cannon appeared in Đại Việt by 1390 at the latest. During the Ming dynasty cannon were used in riverine warfare at the Battle of Lake Poyang. One shipwreck in Shandong had a cannon dated to 1377 and an anchor dated to 1372. From the 13th to 15th centuries cannon-armed Chinese ships travelled throughout Southeast Asia; the first of the western cannon to be introduced were breach-loaders in the early 16th century which the Chinese began producing themselves by 1523 and began improving on.
Japan did not acquire a cannon until 1510 when a monk brought one back from China, did not produce a
Looting referred to as sacking, plundering, despoiling and pillaging, is the indiscriminate taking of goods by force as part of a military or political victory, or during a catastrophe, such as war, natural disaster, or rioting. The proceeds of all these activities can be described as booty, plunder, spoils, or pillage. In armed conflict, pillage is prohibited by international law, constitutes a war crime. Looting by a victorious army during war has been common practice throughout recorded history. Foot soldiers viewed plunder as a way to supplement an meagre income and transferred wealth became part of the celebration of victory. On higher levels, the proud exhibition of loot formed an integral part of the typical Roman triumph, Genghis Khan was not unusual in proclaiming that the greatest happiness was "to vanquish your enemies... to rob them of their wealth". In warfare in ancient times, the spoils of war included the defeated populations, which were enslaved. Women and children might become absorbed into the victorious country's population.
In other pre-modern societies, objects made of precious metals were the preferred target of war looting because of their easy portability. In many cases looting offered an opportunity to obtain treasures that otherwise would not have been obtainable. Since the 18th century, works of art have become a popular target. In the 1930s, more so during World War II, Nazi Germany engaged in large-scale and organized looting of art and property. Looting, combined with poor military discipline, has been an army's downfall - troops who have dispersed to ransack an area may become vulnerable to counter-attack. In other cases, for example the Wahhabi sack of Karbala in 1801 or 1802, loot has financed further victories. Not all looters in wartime are conquerors. Local civilians can take advantage of a breakdown of order to loot public and private property, as in events which took place at the National Museum of Iraq in the course of the Iraq War in 2003. Tolstoy's novel War and Peace describes widespread looting by Moscow's citizens before Napoleon's troops entered the city in 1812, by French troops elsewhere.
Both customary international law and international treaties prohibit pillage in armed conflict. The Lieber Code, Brussels Declaration, Oxford Manual recognized the prohibition against pillage; the Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907 obliges military forces not only to avoid the destruction of enemy property, but to provide protection to it. Article 8 of the Statute of the International Criminal Court provides that in international warfare, the "pillaging a town or place when taken by assault" counts as a war crime. In the aftermath of World War II, a number of war criminals were prosecuted for pillage; the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia brought several prosecutions for pillage. The Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 explicitly prohibits the looting of civilian property during wartime. Theoretically, to prevent such looting, unclaimed property is moved to the custody of the Custodian of Enemy Property, to be handled until returned to its owners; the term "looting" is sometimes used to refer to antiquities being removed from countries by unauthorized people, either domestic people breaking the law seeking monetary gain, or by foreign nations, which are more interested in prestige or "scientific discovery".
An example of this might be the removal of the contents of Egyptian tombs which were transported to museums in Europe. Other examples include the obelisks of Pharaoh Amenhotep II, in the, Pharaoh Ptolemy IX. Whether this constitutes "looting" is a debated point, with other parties pointing out that the Europeans were given permission of some sort, that many of the treasures wouldn't have been discovered at all if the Europeans hadn't funded and organized the expeditions or digs that located them. Many of these antiquities have been returned to their country of origin voluntarily. In the aftermath of the Second World War, Soviet forces systematically plundered the Soviet occupation zone of Germany, including the Recovered Territories which were to be transferred to Poland, they sent valuable industrial equipment and whole factories to the Soviet Union. During a disaster and military are sometimes unable to prevent looting when they are overwhelmed by humanitarian or combat concerns, or cannot be summoned due to damaged communications infrastructure.
During natural disasters, some people find themselves forced to take what is not theirs in order to survive. How to respond to this, where the line between unnecessary "looting" and necessary "scavenging" lies, is a dilemma for governments. In other cases, looting may be tolerated or encouraged by governments for political or other reasons. Around the same time of the Hyksos invasion and occupation of Egypt, Hebrew tradition has it that both Abraham and Moses were given property of Egypt by God. "In Genesis 15:14, the despoliation is an act of justifiable vengeance upon the oppressors of Israel. Yet in Exodus, God uses the plagues as an act of mercy to bring a knowledge of himself to Israel, the Egyptians, to the ends of the earth." See Hyksos Iconoclasm and Genesis 13:2 and Genesis 15:14 and Exodus 12:36. Following the death of Valentinian III in 455, the Vand
Bangkok is the capital and most populous city of Thailand. It is known in Thai as Krung Thep Maha Nakhon or Krung Thep; the city occupies 1,568.7 square kilometres in the Chao Phraya River delta in central Thailand, has a population of over eight million, or 12.6 percent of the country's population. Over fourteen million people lived within the surrounding Bangkok Metropolitan Region at the 2010 census, making Bangkok the nation's primate city dwarfing Thailand's other urban centres in terms of importance. Bangkok traces its roots to a small trading post during the Ayutthaya Kingdom in the 15th century, which grew and became the site of two capital cities: Thonburi in 1768 and Rattanakosin in 1782. Bangkok was at the heart of the modernization of Siam renamed Thailand, during the late-19th century, as the country faced pressures from the West; the city was at the centre of Thailand's political struggles throughout the 20th century, as the country abolished absolute monarchy, adopted constitutional rule, underwent numerous coups and several uprisings.
The city grew during the 1960s through the 1980s and now exerts a significant impact on Thailand's politics, education and modern society. The Asian investment boom in the 1980s and 1990s led many multinational corporations to locate their regional headquarters in Bangkok; the city is now a regional force in business. It is an international hub for transport and health care, has emerged as a centre for the arts and entertainment; the city is known for cultural landmarks, as well as its red-light districts. The Grand Palace and Buddhist temples including Wat Arun and Wat Pho stand in contrast with other tourist attractions such as the nightlife scenes of Khaosan Road and Patpong. Bangkok is among the world's top tourist destinations, has been named the world's most visited city in several rankings. Bangkok's rapid growth coupled with little urban planning has resulted in a haphazard cityscape and inadequate infrastructure. An inadequate road network, despite an extensive expressway network, together with substantial private car usage, have led to chronic and crippling traffic congestion, which caused severe air pollution in the 1990s.
The city has since turned to public transport in an attempt to solve the problem. Five rapid transit lines are now in operation, with more systems under construction or planned by the national government and the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration; the history of Bangkok dates at least back to the early 15th century, when it was a village on the west bank of the Chao Phraya River, under the rule of Ayutthaya. Because of its strategic location near the mouth of the river, the town increased in importance. Bangkok served as a customs outpost with forts on both sides of the river, was the site of a siege in 1688 in which the French were expelled from Siam. After the fall of Ayutthaya to the Burmese Empire in 1767, the newly crowned King Taksin established his capital at the town, which became the base of the Thonburi Kingdom. In 1782, King Phutthayotfa Chulalok succeeded Taksin, moved the capital to the eastern bank's Rattanakosin Island, thus founding the Rattanakosin Kingdom; the City Pillar was erected on 21 April 1782, regarded as the date of foundation of the present city.
Bangkok's economy expanded through international trade, first with China with Western merchants returning in the early to-mid 19th century. As the capital, Bangkok was the centre of Siam's modernization as it faced pressure from Western powers in the late-19th century; the reigns of Kings Mongkut and Chulalongkorn saw the introduction of the steam engine, printing press, rail transport and utilities infrastructure in the city, as well as formal education and healthcare. Bangkok became the centre stage for power struggles between the military and political elite as the country abolished absolute monarchy in 1932. Allied with Japan in World War II, it was subjected to Allied bombing, but grew in the post-war period as a result of US aid and government-sponsored investment. Bangkok's role as a US military R&R destination boosted its tourism industry as well as establishing it as a sex tourism destination. Disproportionate urban development led to increasing income inequalities and migration from rural areas into Bangkok.
Following the US withdrawal from Vietnam in 1973, Japanese businesses took over as leaders in investment, the expansion of export-oriented manufacturing led to growth of the financial market in Bangkok. Rapid growth of the city continued through the 1980s and early 1990s, until it was stalled by the 1997 Asian financial crisis. By many public and social issues had emerged, among them the strain on infrastructure reflected in the city's notorious traffic jams. Bangkok's role as the nation's political stage continues to be seen in strings of popular protests, from the student uprisings in 1973 and 1976, anti-military demonstrations in 1992, successive anti-government demonstrations by opposing groups from 2008 on. Administration of the city was first formalized by King Chulalongkorn in 1906, with the establishment of Monthon Krung Thep Phra Maha Nakhon as a national subdivision. In 1915 the monthon was split into several provinces, the administrative boundaries of which have since further changed.
The city in its current form was created in 1972 with the formation of the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration, following the merger of Phra Nakhon Province on the eastern bank of the Chao Phraya and Thonburi Province on the west during the previous year. The origin of th
The Ayutthaya Kingdom was a Siamese kingdom that existed from 1350 to 1767. Ayutthaya was friendly towards foreign traders, including the Chinese, Portuguese, Japanese, Koreans and Spaniards, Dutch and French, permitting them to set up villages outside the walls of the capital called Ayutthaya. In the 16th century, it was described by foreign traders as one of the biggest and wealthiest cities in the East; the court of King Narai had strong links with that of King Louis XIV of France, whose ambassadors compared the city in size and wealth to Paris. By 1550, the kingdom's vassals included some city-states in the Malay Peninsula, Lan Na and parts of Burma and Cambodia; this part of the kingdom's history is sometimes referred to as the "Ayutthayan Empire". In foreign accounts, Ayutthaya was called Siam, but many sources say the people of Ayutthaya called themselves Tai, their kingdom Krung Tai meaning'Tai country', it was referred to as Iudea in a painting, requested by the Dutch East India Company According to the most accepted version of its origin, the Thai state based at Ayutthaya in the valley of the Chao Phraya River rose from the earlier, nearby Lavo Kingdom and Suvarnabhumi.
One source says that in the mid-14th century, due to the threat of an epidemic, King Uthong moved his court south into the rich floodplain of the Chao Phraya River onto an island surrounded by rivers. The name of the city indicates the influence of Hinduism in the region, it is believed that this city is associated with the Thai national epic, the Ramakien, the Thai version of the Ramayana. Ayutthaya began its hegemony by conquering northern kingdoms and city-states like Sukhothai, Kamphaeng Phet and Phitsanulok. Before the end of the 15th century, Ayutthaya launched attacks on Angkor, the classical great power of the region. Angkor's influence faded from the Chao Phraya River Plain while Ayutthaya became a new great power; the emerging Kingdom of Ayutthaya was growing powerful. Relations between the Ayutthaya and Lan Na had worsened since the Ayutthayan support of Thau Choi's rebellion In 1451, Yuttitthira, a noble of the Kingdom of Sukhothai who had conflicts with Borommatrailokkanat of Ayutthaya, gave himself to Tilokaraj.
Yuttitthira urged Borommatrailokkanat to invade Phitsanulok, igniting the Ayutthaya-Lan Na War over the Upper Chao Phraya valley. In 1460, the governor of Chaliang surrendered to Tilokaraj. Borommatrailokkanat used a new strategy and concentrated on the wars with Lan Na by moving the capital to Phitsanulok. Lan Na suffered setbacks and Tilokaraj sued for peace in 1475. However, the Kingdom of Ayutthaya was not a unified state but rather a patchwork of self-governing principalities and tributary provinces owing allegiance to the king of Ayutthaya under The Circle of Power, or the mandala system, as some scholars suggested; these principalities might be ruled by members of the royal family of Ayutthaya, or by local rulers who had their own independent armies, having a duty to assist the capital when war or invasion occurred. However, it was evident that from time to time local revolts, led by local princes or kings, took place. Ayutthaya had to suppress them. Due to the lack of succession law and a strong concept of meritocracy, whenever the succession was in dispute, princely governors or powerful dignitaries claiming their merit gathered their forces and moved on the capital to press their claims, culminating in several bloody coups.
At the start of the 15th century, Ayutthaya showed an interest in the Malay Peninsula, but the great trading ports of the Malacca Sultanate contested its claims to sovereignty. Ayutthaya launched several abortive conquests against Malacca, diplomatically and economically fortified by the military support of Ming China. In the early-15th century the Ming admiral Zheng He had established a base of operation in the port city, making it a strategic position the Chinese could not afford to lose to the Siamese. Under this protection, Malacca flourished, becoming one of Ayutthaya's great foes until the capture of Malacca by the Portuguese. Starting in the middle of the 16th century, the kingdom came under repeated attacks by the Taungoo Dynasty of Burma; the Burmese–Siamese War began with a Burmese invasion and a failed siege of Ayutthaya. A second siege led by King Bayinnaung forced King Maha Chakkraphat to surrender in 1564; the royal family was taken to Bago, with the king's second son Mahinthrathirat installed as the vassal king.
In 1568, Mahinthrathirat revolted. The ensuing third siege captured Ayutthaya in 1569 and Bayinnaung made Mahathammarachathirat his vassal king. After Bayinnaung's death in 1581, Uparaja Naresuan proclaimed Ayutthaya's independence in 1584; the Thai fought off repeated Burmese invasions, capped by an elephant duel between King Naresuan and Burmese heir-apparent Mingyi Swa in 1593 during the fourth siege of Ayutthaya in which Naresuan famously slew Mingyi Swa. The Burmese–Siamese War was a Thai attack on Burma, resulting in the capture of the Tanintharyi Region as far as Mottama in 1595 and Lan Na in 1602. Naresuan invaded mainland Burma as far as Taungoo in 1600, but was driven back. After Naresuan's death in 1605, northern Tanintharyi and Lan Na returned to Burmese control in 1614; the Ayutthaya Kingdom's attempt to take over Lan Na and northern Tanintharyi in 1662–1664 failed. Foreign trade brought Ayutthaya not only luxury items