Chiang Mai Temples - Wat Muen San - The Other Silver Temple.

Discussion in 'Touring Northern Thailand - Trip Reports Forum' started by DavidFL, Dec 5, 2018 at 5:49 PM.

  1. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator
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    On the south side of Chiang Mai's is the renowned silversmith village of Wua Lai.
    The main attraction is Wat Sri Suphan which has featured on GTR here
    Wat Sri Suphan - Wua Lai - Chiang Mai

    There is however another lesser known "silver temple"" Wat Muen San, just 300 metres away, across Wua Lai road that has an interesting history.

    The art silver side...

    In the grounds of the wat is a art gallery, that looks like a temple.
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    As to be expected the workmanship is impressive with stunning images.
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    To be continued the interesting history...
     
  2. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator
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    The "temple like art gallery" is only a small part of the wat compound.

    The existence of Wat Mun San was first recorded in 1438. It was named after a government official with the rank of "mun" (10,000), whose work was concerned with royal documents, or "san"; hence, "mun san". It appears that in 1522 the monastery was a place where royal documents were being translated and many senior monks lived here.​

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    The monastery was renovated in 1799, by King Kawila of Chiang Mai.

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    In the second world war, the temple grounds were used by the Japanese; & they had a field hospital on the grounds to treat their wounded from the region. There was also a printing press on the premises for printing bank notes.

    Prisoners of war - English, Australian, and New Zealand - were brought here from central Chiang Mai, to work. Prisoners of war were also kept at nearby Wat Sri Suphan.

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    On one side of the compound is a Thai – Japanese Memorial Hall, where every 15th August a memorial service is held to commemorate the end of the war.​

    Wat Muen San is located here: Google Maps

    Info source: Japan in Northwest Thailand during World War II
     
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  3. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator
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    #3 DavidFL, Dec 9, 2018 at 6:06 PM
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2018 at 6:13 PM
    Back to the wat a few days later after a conversation with Stu Lloyd about the Japanese in North Thailand in WW2.

    Another snippet of info on Wat Muen San

    A young Thai, Orachun Tanaphong, living nearby became involved in a minor smuggling operation, providing medicine, cigarettes, news, etc to Allied POWs at San Suphan. Following the war, the lad further proved his metal by eventually joining Thailand's diplomatic corps where he served as an ambassador to several countries. The drop point for the smuggling was a well, located alongside what is now the Memorial hall.

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    The front of the Thai- Japan Memorial hall - which was locked again with no caretaker & keys to be found.
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