|King of Ayutthaya|
|King of Siam|
|Reign||1758–7 April 1767|
(after fall of Ayutthaya, as King of Thonburi)
|Died||17 April 1767
Ayutthaya, Ayutthaya Kingdom
|House||Ban Phlu Luang Dynasty|
Borommaracha Kasat Bowon Sucharit (Thai: บรมราชากษัตริย์บวรสุจริต), Somdet Phra Chao Yu Hua Phra Thi Nang Suriyat Amarin (Thai: สมเด็จพระเจ้าอยู่หัวพระที่นั่งสุริยาสน์อมรินทร์), Chaofa Ekathat (Thai: เอกทัศ), or Krom Khun Anurak Montri, was the 33rd and last monarch of Ayutthaya Kingdom, ruling from 1758 to 7 April 1767 prior to the fall of the kingdom. Moreover, he was called by the people at the time being that "Khun Luang Khi Ruan" (Thai: ขุนหลวงขี้เรื้อน), meaning "king with skin disease"; because he had chloasma.:299
Prince Ekkathat, or Kromma Khun Anurak Montri (Thai: กรมขุนอนุรักษ์มนตรี), was a son of Borommakot. His elder brother, Prince Tham Thibet, was made the Front Palace in 1732. However, Thammathibet had an affair with one of his father's concubines. Ekkathat, upon knowing this, told Boromakot about the lovers. Thammathibet was thus beaten to death in 1746. Ekkathat, who was then next in the succession line, were expected to be the Front Palace. However, Borommakot halted the appointment because of Ekkathat's incompetence.:296–297
One year before his death, Borommakot decided to skip Ekkathat, forcing him into the priesthood, and appointted Ekkathat's younger brother, Uthumphon, as the Front Palace. In 1758, Borommakot died. Uthumphon was then crowned. However, two months after that, Ekkathat returned and claimed for the throne. Ekkathat settled himself in the Suriyat Amarin Palace—therefore came his name Somdet Phra Thi Nang Suriyat Amarin (Literally: the King of Suriyat Amarin Palace). Uthumphon arrested and exececuted his half-brothers Krom Mun Chit Sunthon, Krom Mun Sunthon Thep and Krom Mun Sep Phakdi. Uthumphon then willingly abdicated, entered the priesthood, and Ekkathat was crowned.:297–300
According to an account of Siamese captive after the fall of Ayutthaya, the early years of Ekathat witnessed the revival attempt. The king followed the tradition by donating money to temples. Building of new temples occurred. The trade with foreigners was supported. The western coast ports such as Mergui and Tenasserim were active. However, according to the Burmese and English accounts, when the Mons took refuge in the kingdom, after the Burmese conquest, Ayutthaya became the next target of the Burmese.
However, the king "was incompetent and only interested in the different pleasures of the flesh.":68
Burmese Invasion and Ayutthaya's Downfall
In 1759, Alaungpaya ordered his second son, Hsinbyushin, to attack Tenasserim and Mergui, telling Siam their friendship with Burma was ended since Siam refused to deliver a rebel Mon nobleman who had fled in a French vessel to Mergui. Meeting little resistance, the Burmese continued their advance by attacking other Siamese provincial towns. After capturing Phetchaburi, Alaungpaya decided to advance to Ayutthaya in 1760.:300–304
The Siamese capital was in confusion and an uproar after the Burmese had taken Ratchaburi. Ekkathat was forced to invite his abdicated brother, Uthumphon, to leave the priesthood and resume the sovereignty. Ekkathat became Somdet Phrachao Luang, "king who had abdicated his throne". Umthumphon then prepared the capital for a siege.:307
However, Alaungpaya was wounded during the siege, and died during the Burmese retreat.:310
This postponed the death of Ayutthaya for another 7 years.
Siam under Ekkathat was in turmoil. Ayutthaya lost its control over network cities and Ekkathat was said to be indulged by the luxury of the court and concubines. The peasants went on the rebellion. In 1766, the Burmese armies again invaded Siam—through Mergui under Mahanoratha and Lanna under Neimyo Thihapate after subjugating Lanna and Laotian kingdoms. The Burmese captured various peripheral cities to cut down any supports given to Ayutthaya. A Dutch source said the court faced bankruptcy. The capital totally lost contact with its satellite. Ayutthaya was then helpless.
Local accounts told that Ekkathat desperately tried to counter the Burmese. He ordered his remaining armies and fleets to counter the Burmese at Ratchaburi and Thon Buri, but the Burmese crushed them all. The two Burmese armies joined at Ayutthaya and laid the siege on the city. A foreign account claimed that Ekathat and his family secretly fled from the capital. The nobles then agreed to surrender. On April 7, 1767, Ayutthaya fell. The Burmese looted and burnt the city to the ground.
Siamese chronicles said Ekkathat died upon having been in starvation for more than ten days while concealing himself at Ban Chik Woods (Thai: ป่าบ้านจิก), adjacent to Wat Sangkhawat (Thai: วัดสังฆาวาส).:356 His dead body was discovered by a monk. It was buried at a mound named "Khok Phra Men" (Thai: โคกพระเมรุ), in front of a revered Siamese temple called "Phra Wihan Phra Mongkhonlabophit" (Thai: พระวิหารพระมงคลบพิตร).
The Burmese occupation did not last long. By the end of 1767, the remaining Burmese troops in Siam had been recalled to defend their homeland against the Chinese invasions (1765–1769), leaving Siam in a power vacuum. Taksin (governor of Tak) founded the Kingdom of Thonburi in 1768, and emerged as the primary contender by 1769.
- Rajanubhab, D., 2001, Our Wars With the Burmese, Bangkok: White Lotus Co. Ltd., ISBN 9747534584
- Chakrabongse, C., 1960, Lords of Life, London: Alvin Redman Limited
EkkathatBorn: – Died: 17 April 1767
|King of Ayutthaya
1758–7 April 1767
(after fall of Ayutthaya, as King of Thonburi)