The King Rama V Equestrian Monument
The King Rama V Equestrian Monument is the first monument dedicated to a Thai king. It stands in the Royal Plaza to the south of Dusit Garden, Bangkok. The monument depicts King Rama V astride a magnificent stallion riding high on a pedestal. The majestic dome of the Ananta Samakorn Throne Hall in the background completes the regal scene.
Built to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the coronation of King Rama V or King Chulalongkorn, the King Rama V Equestrian Monument was completed 1908. Cast in Paris by a French sculptor, the monument took a year to complete. King Rama V inaugurated the monument himself.
The funds for the monument were raised from public donations as an expression of the people's love and gratitude to King Rama V for his reforms in modernizing the kingdom. A million baht was raised, a huge sum of money in those days.
After the death of King Rama V in 1910, his son, King Rama IV established Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, in honor of his father, with the remaining funds.
Visitors to Thailand in the 1980s would probably rememberthe 10 baht bank note which has the King Rama V Equestrian Monument printed on the back. These notes have since been withdrawn and replaced by the 10 baht coin.
The monument is deeply revered by Thais who can be seen at all times of the day at the monument praying and paying homage to the great king. Some observe special days for visits, namely Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.