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8 Ethnic Groups in Ratchaburi

          Ratchaburi is one of the provinces in the Western part of Thailand with a long history in the past. It was also a very old city where ancestors from many periods of time moved from different places to settle down in this city more than a thousand years ago since the Ayudhaya. Thonburi and Rattanakosin Era.
          In those old days, Rachaburi used to be “Monthon Ratchaburi” (Town Territory) and for this reason there were 8 different ethnic groups which migrated from other place and settled down in the Monthon Rachaburi. Each group has different cultures. Traditions and festivals.

Local Thai Ethnic Groups

          Local Thai people in the central part of Ratchaburi at Ban Phohak in the district of Bang Phae were known to be real Thais for their local native accent of the Thai language. As for example, the word which was commonly used before a female’s name “Aor” like Aor Dang and Aor Noom but the local people here sounds the word “Aor” without a sweet tune in their voice.
          At Ban Phohak community, it is surrounded with elegant Thai-styled houses. There is the important temple named “Yai Phohuk Temple” which was built 272 years ago with a 200 years old bell from the past. This temple seems to be the heart and the center of devotion to the people in this community. There was an evidence under the bell’s foundation that this temple was built during the Rattanakosin Era. This community has their own customs and traditions such as merit-making in which they use bamboo containers to carry the food like “sumroam” curry and flowers offered the monks. Other traditions are the local games called “Pheng Rum Thon” and the popular cow racing.

Thai-Chinese Ethnic Groups

          Thai-Chinese people have an important role in the economy of Ratchaburi. A large number of the Chinese ancestors migrated in this town during the reign of King Rama V. In those time, there were 5 different groups of Chinese people with different groups of Chinese people with different groups of Chinese people with different dialects spoken. They were the Tae-chew Chinese, Kae Chinese, Hailum Chinese, Kwang thung and the Hokain Chinese. Mostly they lived in Muang Ratchaburi. Damnoen Saduak. Banpong and the Photharam districts. The places they settled down look like “China Town of Ratchaburi.”
          The symbols of Chinese community are the “Sam Chao” (Chinese Spirit House) and sacred places that was called “Rongjeh” such as Sam Chao Mae Thubtim, Sam Chao Mae Berk Phai, San Chao Pho Kuan Uoh.”
          Regarding the Thai-Chinese Traditions and festivals are the Chinese New Year. Cheng Meng. Full moon festival and the Bua Loi festival. Their well-known occupation is the dragon-dresigned jars making and the car accessories manufacturing.

Thai-Yuan Ethnic Groups

          The Thai-Yuan people originally lived in the Lanna-Kingdom in the Northern part of Thailand. They migrated to Ratchaburi and settled down near the right side of the Meklong river about 2 kilometers to the East called the “Ban Rai Nathee”
          After settling down near the river. Some people moved to different places in Ratchaburi, such as at Tambon khuboa, Dontakho, Angthong, Chedihuk, Hinkong. Donrae etc. of Muang Ratchaburi district. They also moved downtown and some other districts of Ratchburi Such as at Tambon Nongpho, Tambon Bangkado etc. of Photharam district and at Tambon Nongplamor of Banpong district.
          Thai-Yuan people have their own dialect and traditions. They introduced the “Jok Textile Weaving” which soon become very popular and the 5 Star OTOP handmade product of Ratchaburi, Khan Making tarn tree phoducts.
          Ji pa tha Phan Satan Ban ku Bua was Thai-Yuan museum with 300 long years of history of the Thai-Yuan ancestors at the Klongsuwankhiri Temple in khubua district of Ratchaburi province.

Thai-Mon Ethnic Groups

          From the evidence of the Thai-Mon group migration to Thailand was in the Bhuddist year 2127, leading the group of Mon people were Phramahatheankhanchong, Phaya Kiat and Phaya Ram who brought them to Ayudhaya province. After that they moved to many places in Thailand. The Mon ancestors in Ratchaburi settled near the Mekhlong River in Photharam and Banpong districts.
          The Mons believes in Buddhism and built many temples in the past. One of the important temples was the khong kharam temple Tombon Klongthakod in Photharam district with a beautiful historical painting on the walls by some artist in the Rattanakosin Era and beside the temple is a museum. Other important temple built by the Mons was the Muang temple Tombon Banmuang in Banpong district.
          There is also a museum in this temple which displayed the ways of life of the Mon people performing traditional activities during special occasions.
          The traditions and festivals of the Thai-Mon people are Songkran Khao-Chae, Hae Pha, Songnam Phrasong, Takbatnampuerng, Sartkhaolam, Makhabucha Day, Rumpeemon and the Loikhrathong festival.

Thai-Karen (Karing) Ethnic Group

          Thai-Karen people had settled down at the Thai-Myanmar territory near the Tanaosri mountain range.
          It was estimated that the Thai-Karen people living in Ratchaburi, Petchaburi and Prachuabkhirikhan were originally from Thawai City of Myanmar. When they moved to Ratchaburi they choose to settle down in Tambon Suanpung, Tanbon Tanowsi of Suanpung districts, Tambon Ban bueng Tambon Banka of Banka districts also at Tambon Yanghuk of Paktho districts.
          This group also has their own culture and traditions such as Wienchedi,YeabLungKaring Wat jang Charoen, the festival of paying respect to God of the village (Wai Ton Mai) and Phuk Khaen Riak Khwan kinkhaohor festival. As part of these festivals showed the ways of like of the Thai-Karen people in Ratchaburi, these attract and promote tourism in the area.

Thai-Songdam (LaoSong) Ethnic Group

          Thai Songdam people migrated from Petchaburi and Nakorn Pathom provinces. Orignallay, they came from Thang and Dianbiengfu cities and other places of the Republic of Vietnam near the territory of Laos.
          Most of them now live at Bantaratkhwai of Chombueng district, Ban Donklang , Ban Boungam ,Bankhoktubpet if Damnoen sabuak distrioct Ban Donkla, Bantakdad, Bandonphorm of Bangphae district and Banhouykhaochin at Tambon Hauay Yangthon of Pakthor district.
          The symbol of Thai-Songdam people indicates from “Phafailaitangmo” (hand-made weaving cloth with water-melon design), the ladies’ different hair roll styles, the festival of khorn games and Khan dancing.
          For the past over 200 years, Thai-Songdam tradition is still well-known and practice.

Thai-Lao Wieng Ethnic Group

          Thai-lao wieng group was originally from Wiengchan city of Laos. The people of this group settled down in Ratchaburi during the Thonburi Era Through the Rattanakosin Era.
          They lived 2 kilometers to the East of Makhlong river bank at Khaorang in Muang Ratchaburi district, Bankhong, Banbormagrood, Banleark, Bansing, Bankompangneor, Bankompangtai, Bandonsai, Bannongree, Banbanglam in Photharam district, Bandonsaloa, Bannongpradook, Bannong-or, Bankhongnoi in Banpong district. Besides, there is one more group of Thai-Lao Wieng in Chombung district for example at Bannasamor, Bansoongneun, Bantamnieb, Bankao. Bannong and Banwangmadua.
          They have an interesting cultures, Traditions and festivals such as Boonkhaocheeh festival, Hae Dokmai Chalong Songkran or the Songkran flower parade, Boontainammun and Kaehorkhao (sartlao) festivals celebrated throughout the different months of the year.

Thai-Khmer Ethnic Group

          Khmer Lao Derm ancestors were one of the ethnic group in Ratchaburi Province. There was no real evidence about the origin and the cause of immigration to Ratchaburi and nearby the provinces of the Thai-khmer people.
          There was only story told by the old people telling about their ancestors who were driven from the Noth. At present, Khme Lao derm group still settles down in different areas and districts of Ratchaburi province. They have their own language except that the accent has some similarity of those in the North Eastern province. The language used are also similarity of those in the North Eastern province. The language used are also similar to the native Thais in the North and the Northeast provinces.
          Nowadays, only the adults speak the Khmer language when praying to the spirits of the house and of their ancestor’s spirit. It was also used during special occasions and festival celebrations of the Khmer Lao Derm group.
          From the document’s evidence named “Pharatchaphongsawadarn” telling about the moving of Khmer people from photisat. Siamrat and Phatabong cities of Ratchaburi.
          They were in different group as mentioned above because of the difference in spoken language as native people in Cambodia. They settled down both the Meklong river sides of Ratchaburi at Banphongsawai, Banklongkhae, Bankungkathin. Bankhungnamwon, Banuohreang, Banragkham, Banhuaymoo and Bandenkratay of Muang district, Bankhokpra Tombon Paktho. Bannongkratom Tombon Nongkratom of Paktho district. The traditions and festivals of Thai-Khmer people are Songkran Day, Karn Thamboonklangban and local games.
Information of Ratchaburi Culture Office

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