WAT PA RONG





Wat Pa Rong, or the Monastery of the Mill Quarter, was located on Ayutthaya's city island in the southern part of the city in the Pratu Chai Sub-district. The monastery was located on the west bank of Khlong Pratu Thep Mi (1).


Wat Saphan Nak lay north, while Wat Am Mae stood south along the same canal. There are no traces anymore visible of this monastery above ground level.


Historical data about the monastery and its construction are unknown.


Wat Pa Rong on the maps:


A 19th-century map drawn by an unknown surveyor could show Wat Pa Rong. The monastery shows on the east bank of the Chakra Noi Canal (2). Wat Dawadung stood in the east, Wat San Jao Thong south and Wat Pa Noi north.


The site is indicated on Phraya Boran Rachathanin's map drafted in 1926 CE. Wat Pa Rong is located on the west bank of Khlong Pratu Thep Mi and north of Wat Am Mae. Wat Saphan Nak stood north, Wat Pa Sak east and Wat Jingjok west. The monastery is also shown as Wat Rom Khao or the Monastery of the White Umbrella. Phraya Boran (1871-1936 CE) was the Superintendent Commissioner of Monthon Ayutthaya from 1925 till 1929 CE but occupied important functions since 1896 CE in Monthon Ayutthaya.


The site is not indicated on the Fine Arts Department (FAD) map of 1957 CE but reappears on 1974, 1993 and the 2007 GIS map. The indication of Wat Rom Bang on the last is likely another interpretation of the denomination on PBR’s map.


Wat Pa Rong was on the present premises of the Ayutthaya Witthayalai School in geographical coordinates: 14° 21' 1.99" N, 100° 33' 52.32" E.


Footnotes:


(1) Khlong Pratu Thep Mi was situated on Ayutthaya's city island outside the Historical Park in Pratu Chai sub-district. The north-south running canal had its mouth at the old Lopburi River opposite the mouth of Khlong Phraya Phan, leading to Wat Phraya Kong and Wat Phraya Phan. The canal was fed by the waters of Bueng Phra Ram, which in its turn was filled by the waters of the Lopburi River via the Lam Khu Pak Sra. The canal passed the fortified city wall at the Thep Mi Gate, also known as the Khao Semi Gate, a large watergate. The canal has been filled up after the fall of Ayutthaya (1767 CE), and only a few traces of the waterway are left today.

(2) Khlong Chakrai Noi is a defunct canal of which some small stretches remain on the premises of the Rajaphat Institute, south of Rojana Road. The premises of the Sam Chao Phraya Museum also show a stretch of water, but here the old canal has been probably altered. Khlong Chakrai Noi had its mouth in the loop of the old Lopburi River around the city, a stretch that became the Chao Phraya River in the 19th century due to deviation works.