WAT MONTHOP 3 (วัดมณฑป)
Wat Monthop or the Monastery of the Spired Building was once located northwest
of the main island, situated strategically within the defensive
Khlong Maha Nak canal
system, just south of
Wat Lan Pho. Unfortunately, no traces are visible above the
ground. Some older local fisherman claim to remember seeing it as a child, but they point
out that its remains are currently underwater.

This former monastery - or whatever was left of it after the Burmese invasion of 1767 –
disappeared partially due to modern urbanization. With the construction of Highway
#309 and other modern roads, the area’s interlocking system of canals was permanently
blocked. A reservoir was also established just south of
Wat Phukhao Tong, which
further altered the geographic landscape. Meanwhile, seasonal flooding prevailed. All
these factors have contributed to Wat Monthop’s demise.

There is very little known about the history of this monastery. It does not appear on
Phraya Boran Rachathanin’s map in 1926 and is first mentioned on a Fine Arts
Department  map in 1993. Charnvit Kasetsiri and Michael Wright point out that a Lao
settlement was located in this area. The war captives trapped and sold birds that were
later released for merit [1].

[1] Discovering Ayutthaya - Charnvit Kasetsiri & Michael Wright (2007) - Toyota
Thailand Foundation - page 139.

After a reconnaissance in Phukhao Thong sub-district mid May 2009, the location of
Wat Monthop (mondop or mandapa) was found. There are no traces remaining of the
former monastery, with exception of a small brick mound.

Locals built on the spot a commemoration sala. In the sala sits a Buddha in the
Bhumisparsa hand gesture also called "Victory over Mara" mudra. The image comes
from the opposite temple,
Wat Phanom Yong. Some pieces of Buddha images
discovered on the spot were deposited in the sala.

The site is located in Geo Coord: 14° 21' 47.97" N, 100° 32' 58.01" E.
Text by Ken May - April 2009
Text, maps & photographs by Tricky Vandenberg - May 2009
Updated January 2015
Sala on brick mound
Buddha image in the sala
(Sala on brick mound)
(Buddha image in the sala)
Detail of a 1993 Fine Arts Department map
(Detail of a 1993 Fine Arts Department map -
Courtesy Khun Supot Prommanot, Director of the 3th
Regional Office of Fine Arts)