THUNG HANTRA (ทุ่งหันตรา)
Thung Hantra or the "Field of the Division of the Seal" was the area bordered on the north by Ban Ma; in the east by Khlong Kot, in the south by
Khlong Khao Mao; and in the west by
Khlong Hantra, part of a loop in the old Pa Sak River.

The field was probably named after a hamlet situated in this rather isolated area. It is only in 1738 that the
Hantra Monastery was inaugurated by
King Borommakot as the religious center of the village.

"Reaching 1100 of the Royal Era, the year of the horse, tenth of the decade, during the sixth month, His Majesty the Supreme Holy Lord of
the Realm went in holy royal procession with a formation of military barges to dedicate the
Monastery of the Division of the Seal, had a
festival to celebrate the holy temple held for three days, and offered appropriate alms articles to the holy monks and clerics in great

The field was used as an assembly and formation area for the army, especially in campaigns against Cambodia. In 1581 King Naresuan ordered to
prepare 100,000 conscripts, 800 elephants and 1500 horses at Thung Hantra to attack Lovek. The same occurred in 1594. It was of course more
convenient to organize an assembly area east of the city in an attack on Cambodia, as if done so in the other directions either the Pa Sak River or
Chao Phraya River needed to be crossed.

"On Saturday, the fifth day of the waxing moon in the [BCDF: second] [E: ninth] month, both of the Kings ordered that the troops - one
hundred thousand fully armed draftees, eight hundred equipped elephants and [BCF: fifteen hundred] [D: one thousand, one hundred and
fifty] [E: five hundred] horses - be [B: prepared at] [CDEF: escorted to] the
Han Tra Field." [2]

"On Friday, the first day of the waxing moon in the first month, the King sent [the proper officials] to hold the Rite of Assembling the
Troops in the vicinity of
Hantra Field." [3]

In Thung Hantra near Ban Dokmai stood a wooden fort. The fort is indicated on the French map "Carte Du Cours Du Menan, Depuis Siam Jusqu’
la Mer, levée sur les Lieux par Ingénieurs Français" with the name "Fort de Bois". The fortification is mentioned in the Royal Chronicles of Ayutthaya
during the war with Hongsawadi in 1563-64 AD. 10.000 conscripts under Chao Phraya Maha Sena set up the eastern defenses for Ayutthaya in
this location. The Siamese stockades held up the first attack of the Burmese under the Uparat (second king). The latter warned his officers that they
would be beheaded and impaled if the Siamese position was not taken. The Burmese now, reinforced their attack and chased Maha Sena and his
troops over the Pa Sak River towards Wat Maheyong. Many wounded Siamese soldiers drowned in the river at that time.

"Caophraya Maha Sena, in command of ten thousand men wearing green tunics and green hats, went out to encamp at Thòng Na Hantra
Fort in Dòkmai Village."
Text by Tricky Vandenberg - September 2012
Indication of a fort on a French map - end 17th Century
Thung Hantra was also a stretch of the escape route of Phraya Kamphaeng Phet (prior Phraya Tak and later King Taksin) and his troops, consisting
of about 1000 Thai and Chinese soldiers. The story goes  he went praying at
Wat Phichai to seek good fortune in his planned escape to the south.
Phraya Kamphaeng Phet broke through the Burmese encirclement near Ban Hantra. The Burmese noticed his escape and set in pursuit. They caught
up, but were met with stout resistance of the Siamese and had to retreat. Phraya Kamphaeng Phet as thus continued his escape to the south. [5]

Following were the temples in alphabetical order, located in this area: Wat Hantra, Wat Khao Mao.


[1] The Royal Chronicles of Ayutthaya - Richard D. Cushman (2006) - page 433 / Source: Royal Autograph - Dedication of the Monastery of the
Division of the Seal.
[2] The Royal Chronicles of Ayutthaya - Richard D. Cushman (2006) - page 139 / Source: Phan Canthanumat, British Museum, Reverend
Phonnarat, Phra Cakkraphatdiphong & Royal Autograph - Warfare Between Ayutthaya and Lawæk.
[3] Ibid. - page 142 - War With Lawæk, 1594.
[4] Ibid. - page 32 - War With Hongsawadi, 1563-1564.
[5] The Royal Chronicles of Ayutthaya - Richard D. Cushman (2006) - page 515 / Source: Royal Autograph - Taksin Decides to Flee to the East.