Burmese–Siamese War (1785–86)

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Burmese–Siamese War (1785–1786)
Part of the Burmese–Siamese wars
Date January 1785 – January 1786
Location Southern and western Siam, Lan Na
Result Siamese victory
Territorial
changes
Siam consolidates control of Chiang Mai, and gains control of Chiang Saen
Belligerents
Konbaung Dynasty (Burma) Rattanakosin Kingdom (Siam)
Commanders and leaders
Bodawpaya
Minkhaung Kyaw
Rama I Maha Sura Singhanat Anurak Devesh
Prince Kawila
Units involved

Royal Burmese Army including:

Shan regiments
Mon regiments
Royal Siamese Army
Strength
144,000[1][2] 70,000
Casualties and losses
~70,000 ~15,000

The Burmese–Siamese War (1785–1786), known as the Nine Armies' Wars in Siamese history because the Burmese came in nine armies, was fought between the Konbaung dynasty of Burma and the Chakri dynasty of resurgent Siam (Thailand).

In early 1785, King Bodawpaya of Konbaung dynasty sent an expedition force to take Jung Ceylon (Phuket) to prevent foreign arms shipments to Siam but the invasion force was driven back. In October 1785, Bodawpaya pursued an ambitious campaign to expand his dominions into the lands of the former Ayutthaya Kingdom. He launched a four-pronged invasion towards Chiang Mai, Tak, Kanchanaburi, and Jung Ceylon. The combined strength was about 50,000 men. The invasion forces had faced tough heavy resistance from the Siamese forces and finally the war become a total disaster of the Burmese armies. The defeat that the invasion turned out to be the last full-scale invasion of Siam by Burma.

Invasion (1785)[edit]

Northern theatre[edit]

In mid-October 1785, King Bodawpaya armies attacked Lanna in northern Siam, where Kawila, Prince of Lampang, put up a brave fight and delayed the Burmese advance, all the while waiting for reinforcements from Bangkok. When Phitsanulok was captured, Anurak Devesh the Rear Palace, and Rama I himself led Siamese forces to the north. The Siamese relieved Lampang from the Burmese siege.

Southern theatre[edit]

In the south, Bodawpaya lie waiting at Chedi Sam Ong. The Front Palace (Maha Sura Singhanat) led his troops to the south the counter-attack the Burmese that came from Ranong through Nakhon Si Thammarat. The engagements occurred at Kanchanaburi. The Burmese also attacked Jung Ceylon, where to governor had just died. Chan, wife of the governor, and her sister Mook gathered people to defend Mueang Thalang against the Burmese. Today, Chan and Mook are revered as the two heroines, Thao Thep Kasattri and Thao Sri Sunthon.

The Burmese captured Songkhla. Upon hearing the news, the governors of Phatthalung Province fled. However, a monk named Phra Maha headed a force of villagers against the Burmese. His campaign was also successful. Phra Maha was later raised to Phraya Thukkharat by Rama I.[3]

Retreat[edit]

Aside from the Burmese northern army which took Chiang Mai and swept down to Lampang, the Burmese southern armies were driven back, or in one case, nearly annihilated. All of the Burmese invasion armies withdrew in disarray in late-January 1786. So severe was the defeat that the invasion turned out to be the last full-scale invasion of Siam by Burma.

Tha Din Daeng campaign (1786)[edit]

King Bodawpaya renewed attacks in early-1786. This time, he didn’t divide his troops but instead formed into single army. Bodawpaya passed through the Chedi Sam Ong and settled in Ta Din Dang. Maha Sura Singhanat marched the Siamese forces to face Bodawpaya. The fighting was very short and Bodawpaya was quickly defeated. This short war was called “Ta Din Dang campaign”.

The campaign is commemorated by a park established by the Royal Thai Army 40 kilometres (25 mi) from the town of Kanchanaburi.[4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.m-culture.go.th/detail_page.php?sub_id=525[dead link]
  2. ^ http://www.unigang.com/Article/8641
  3. ^ "Phraya Thukkharat (Chuai) Monument". Thailand Travel Information. 2TourThailand.com. August 15, 2011. Retrieved August 15, 2011. Later, he left the monkhood and was royally appointed as Phraya Thukkharat in charge of official duties as an assistant to the city ruler. [dead link]
  4. ^ "The Nine-Army Battle Historical Park". Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT). Retrieved 11 September 2016.