WAT JONG KROM (วัดจงกรม)
Wat Jong Krom is today only a restored ruin located off the city island in the northern
area of Ayutthaya in Khlong Sra Bua district.

The temple was situated in an area called
Thung Khwan, nearly on the same north - west
axis parallel to
Khlong Sra Bua, in between Wat Phraya Maen and Wat Phra Ngam.
Wat Prasat stood north and adjacent from Wat Jong Krom.

The name of the monastery likely refers to a meditation technique, namely walking
meditation (1)

The site features a chedi, a vihara, an ubosot and different satellite chedi, all surrounded
by a wall. The ground plan of the monastery is a bit uncommon. In olden times it was the
rule that in addition of a stupa (phra prang or phra chedi), there was a vihara. Stupa and
vihara - in the simplest design - stood in the same main longitudinal axis. Often a chedi
was first built as a memorial, indicating the exact spot at which the event took place in
whose memory the temple was established. As we find here the ordination hall (ubosot)
not in the main axis, the ubosot was presumably built at a later stage. [1]

Traditions though have been kept, as the ordination hall was built parallel to the vihara
and placed in the center of the monastic complex as it is the most accentuated religious
building. The outer wall dates probably of the same time as the construction of the
ubosot.

The principal stupa is a bell-shaped chedi in Ayutthaya style, built on an octagonal
foundation (in the cardinal and inter-cardinal directions). The chedi has an entry in the
east, leading into its sanctity via a staircase. In the cella along the inner wall niches were
built, where once Buddha images stood.

The vihara stands in the usual position east of the phra chedi, with its entrance facing east
towards the old
Lopburi River. The building measured 11.7 meters in width on 19.2
meters in length, nearing the 1:2 classic proportion. The vihara has been restored at least
four times.

The ordination hall, parallel to the vihara, had also its main entrance to the east. There
were three doors in the front and two in the back, but the latter back doors has been
closed. The ubosot had three windows on each side, an odd number preferred in
Siamese art. [1] The main Buddha image stood on a pedestal on the west side. The
monastic building measured 9,2 meters in width on 16.4 meters in length.

On the axis in between the vihara and the ordination hall near the eastern entry there is a
stupa. Only the square-shaped foundations are left. The sides have a length of
7.8 meters. The chedi had a base in two steps. The lower base had stairs in the middle
of each side. The upper base was surrounded with a balustrade. Local villagers indicate
the structure as the bell tower of the complex.

The whole temple complex including the monk's quarters was surrounded by a moat.
The monk's dwellings were situated in the south as it was a general rule that
their quarters must lie to the right side of the main Buddha image of the ubosot.

Historical data about the monastery and its construction are unknown. Wat Jong Krom
was abandoned during the Siam - Burmese war which lead to the destruction of
Ayutthaya in 1767. The monastery was used again in the Early Ratanakosin period.

During excavations in situ a kiln was discovered, which led to the assumption that the
bricks for the construction of the monastery were made on location. Kilns in situ were
also found for example at Wat Phutthai Sawan. (2)

Wat Jong Krom is only found on recent Fine Arts Department maps and bears here
either the name Wat Jong Krom (วัดจงกรม - 1993 map) or Wat Jong Klom
(วัดจงกลม - 1974, 2005 maps). The ruins are located in Geo Coord: +14° 22' 28.63"
N, +100° 33' 19.04" E.

Footnotes:

(1) จงกรม = to walk back and forth. The Fine Arts Department mentions Wat Jong
Klom in situ, but I presume it is Wat Jong Krom as indicated on the 1993 FAD map.
(2) Issue explained by Prof. Bidya Sriwattanasarn in location on 26 June 2010.

References:

[1] Buddhist temples of Thailand (Buddhistische Tempelanlagen in Siam) - Karl Döhring
(1920).
Wat Jong Krom - view from the south
Text & photographs by Tricky Vandenberg - September 2009
Reviewed September 2011
(Wat Jong Krom - view from the south)
Chedi and vihara from the east
View of ordination hall and vihara
One of the niches within the cella of the chedi
View of the ordination hall
(Chedi and vihara from the east)
(View of the ordination hall)
(View of ordination hall and vihara)
(One of the niches within the cella of the chedi)
View of a satellite chedi
(View of a satellite chedi)
Detail of a 2007 Fine Arts Department GIS map
(Detail of a 2007 Fine Arts Department GIS map -
Courtesy of the Fine Arts Department - 3th Region)