Phraya Phahon Phonphayuhasena

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Phraya Phahon Phonphayuhasena

Phraya Phahon Phonphayuhasena ( Thai : พระยา พหล พล พยุหเสนา pronunciation: [ pʰráʔjaː pʰáhon pʰonpʰájúhàsĕːnaː ]; short Phraya Phahon , born March 29, 1887 in Bangkok as Phot Phahonyothin ; † February 14, 1947 ibid) was a Thai military officer. In 1932 he was at the head of the “ People's Party ”, which achieved the transition of the country from absolutism to a constitutional monarchy by means of a coup . After another coup he was Prime Minister of Thailand from 1933 to 1938 . From 1932 to 1938 and again from 1944 to 1946 he was commander in chief of the army. Most recently he held the rank of general.


Phraya Phahon was born in Bangkok as Phot Phahonyothin , son of General Phraya Phahon Phonpayuhasena (Thin Phahonyothin) and Jub Phahonyothin. He later married Boonlong Phahon Phonpayuhasena.

Education and career

Phot Phahonyothin in Germany, 1905

He began his education at the school of Wat Chakkrawat-Ratchawat (Wat Sampluem for short) and at Sukuman College. He continued his studies at the cadet academy of the Thai army and at the age of 16 was able to receive a government scholarship to continue his studies in Germany at the Prussian main cadet institute in Groß-Lichterfelde near Berlin, where he was a classmate of Hermann Göring . After graduation, he joined the 4th Artillery Infantry Regiment of the Prussian Army . In 1912 he continued his education in Denmark, but was recalled in 1913 when he ran out of funds.

Phot Phahonyothin continued his military career in the 4th Field Artillery Regiment in Ratchaburi Province and three years later moved to Bang Sue Artillery Headquarters , Bangkok. In 1917 he became commander of the 9th field artillery regiment of Chachoengsao . Here he received the feudal honorary title Luang and later Phra Sarayutsonsit because of his extraordinarily good and self-sacrificing services in the army. During the 1920s he was delegated to the Imperial Japanese Army for a year . On April 1, 1928 he was appointed colonel . On May 20 of the same year he joined the Royal Guard and on November 6, 1931, like his father, he received the title Phraya Phahon Phonpayuhasena. He then became vice-commander of the artillery.

The "Four Musketeers" (Phraya Phahon, 3rd from left)

In 1932 he headed the constitutionalist “People's Party” ( khana ratsadon ) founded by young officers and intellectuals with three other senior officers (collectively known as the “Four Musketeers” ). On June 24th, after a bloodless coup (“Siamese Revolution”), he formed the “Public Committee” (a kind of cabinet) to abolish the absolute monarchy and replace it with a constitutional monarchy . After the overthrow, he was commander-in-chief of the army until 1938 .

Term of office as Prime Minister and "Elder Statesman"

Phraya Phahon (1st row, left) with a Thai delegation and the Japanese Prime Minister General Tōjō Hideki (1st row, center) in Tokyo in 1942.

Phraya Phahon was named Prime Minister of Thailand on June 21, 1933 after another coup and served until September 11, 1938. During this time he faced many problems. In 1934 part of the army under Prince Boworadet rebelled . During his reign, however, compulsory schooling was introduced and expenditure on education quadrupled. In 1937 a scandal broke out when it became known that a large part of the crown's assets had been sold to senior officials below market prices. After new elections in 1938, the cabinet was finally urged to resign. The parliament elected Colonel Phibunsongkhram as his successor . Phraya Phahon was awarded the honorary title of "Elder Statesman".

Towards the end of the Second World War , after the removal of the pro-Japanese military ruler Phibunsongkhram, he was again commander-in-chief of the army and was promoted to general .

Phraya Phahon Phonpayuhasena died of a stroke on February 14, 1947 at the age of sixty .

useful information

Thailand's "Highway No. 1", which runs from the Victory Monument in Bangkok's Ratchathewi district up to the Myanmar border in Chiang Rai Province , is named Phraya Phahon in honor of the Phahonyothin Highway .

Individual evidence

  1. a b c Short biography ( memento from January 26, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) (English)
  2. a b c d e Judith A. Stowe: Siam Becomes Thailand. A story of intrigue. C. Hurst & Co., London 1991, ISBN 0-82481-393-6 , p. 370.

Web links