CHEDI AY & CHEDI YI
The two chedis from the Early Ayutthaya period are located in central Ayutthaya on the
crossing of Naresuan Rd (former Pa Than Rd) and the Chikun Rd next to the
Pa Than
Bridge, opposite Wat Racha Burana.

In situ are the ruins of two brick chedis dating from 1424, each with an octagonal base.  
Chedi Ai Phraya (the smallest ruin) is situated north of Chedi Yi Phraya. Following the
Fine Arts Department the two chedis were surrounded by an outer wall, although no
traces remain

History relates that King Intharaja I had three sons, named according to the old
numerical system (Ai = first, Yi = second and Sam = third). On the death of their father,
in 1424, the two elder sons, Ai Phraya living in Suphanburi, and Yi Phraya leaving in
Sanburi (1), fought for the throne here in Ayutthaya. Both princes engaged each other in
personal combat, mounted on elephant; on or near the Charcoal Quarter Bridge
(Saphan Pa Than). Both were severely wounded and died from the combat. The
youngest brother, Chao Sam Phraya, living in Chainat, was then proclaimed King under
the title of Boromaraja II. The King commanded two chedis built on the site where his
brothers engaged in combat. [1]

George Bacon recalls this incident as follows:
One curious tradition is on record, the
date of which is at the beginning of the fifteenth century. On the death of King
Intharaxa, the sixth of the dynasty, his two eldest sons, who were rulers of smaller
provinces, hastened, each one from his home, to seize their father's vacant throne.
Mounted on elephants they hastened to Ayuthia, and by strange chance arrived at
the same moment at a bridge, crossing in opposite directions. The princes were at
no loss to understand the motive each of his brother's journey. A contest ensued
upon the bridge a contest so furious and desperate that both fell, killed by each
other's hands. One result of this tragedy was to make easy the way of the youngest
and surviving brother, who, coming by an undisputed title to the throne, reigned
long and prosperously.
[2]

Footnotes:

(1) Sankha Buri in Chainat province is an historical site located on the Noi River (old
river bed of the Chao Phraya River) and dates back to the Sukhothai period. Prior the
Ayutthaya period (1351 - 1767), the town was known as Phraek Sri Racha (Mueang
Phraek) and built by King Lerthai in 1317. The town was in the 15th century under
Ayutthaya, as Chao Yi Phraya, second son of King Intharacha (r. 1409-1424) of the
Suphannaphum dynasty, was named ruler of this city by his father. Mueang San was as
thus in fact a Mueang Luk in the Early Ayutthaya Period. The town was likely already
occupied in the Dvaravati Period (6 - 11th Century) and followed by Khmer rule (12th
century) thereafter, before becoming a frontier city of Sukhothai. It was an important
defensive post in both the Sukhothai and Ayutthaya Kingdoms.

References:

[1] The Royal Chronicles of Ayutthaya - Richard D. Cushman (2006) Page 15 / Source:
Luang Prasoet - King Boromracha II, 1424-1448. Find here under a more extended
version of the Chronicles written in the post-Ayutthaya period:
In 780, a year of the
dog, tenth of the decade, King Intharacha I passed away, having been on the royal
throne for fifteen years. Prince Ai Phraya and Prince Yi Phraya moved in to
contend with each other for the royal throne. Prince Ai Phraya came and set
himself up in the Municipality of Maphrao Forest at the Chai Pavilion Monastery.
Prince Yi Phraya came and set himself up at the Chaiyaphum Monastery so as to
enter the city by way of the Cao Phrom Market. The chief elephants met and
engaged each other at the foot of Than Forest Bridge. Both princes wielded war
scythes and both had their throats torn open at the same time. The chief ministers
went out to have an audience with Prince Sam Phraya and, informing him of the
events whereby his older brothers had both had their necks slashed while fighting
on elephants, invited him to enter the Capital and ascend the royal throne. He
took the royal title of King Bòromracha II. He then had the bodies of Prince Ai
Phraya and Prince Yi Phraya dug up and taken to be cremated. On the cremation
site he had a monastery, with a great holy reliquary and a preaching hall,
established and named it the Ratchaburana Monastery. On the site where Prince
Ai Phraya and Prince Yi Phraya fought each other to the death on elephants, at
the foot of Than Forest Bridge, he had
two holy monuments erected.
[2] Siam, the land of the white elephant - George Bacon (1893) - page 23.
Text & photograps by Tricky Vandenberg - April 2009
Review April 2013
(Chedi Yi and Chedi Ai)
(Chedi Yi and Chedi Ai)
(Chedi Yi)
(Chedi Yi and Chedi Ai)