The Oldest Known Writing in Siamese: The Inscription of Phra Ram Khamhæng of Sukhothai, 1293 A.D./Bibliography


Bowring, Sir John : The Kingdom and People of Siam. London 1827. Vol. I. pp. 278—279. (A very brief notice accompanied by a specimen of the writing—an indifferent pen-sketch of the first few lines.)

Bastian, Dr. A. : Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Bengal. Vol. XXXIV. 1864. (The translation occupies pp. 7—12 of the reprint, which alone I have been able to see. It is really no translation, but a first sketch, in which the writer reports such impressions of the drift and import of the writing as he was able to get from Siamese sources.)

Schmitt, Père : Excursions et Reconnaissances, Vol. VIII. Saigon 1884. pp. 169—187, with 9 plates of the text—its first publication. (The text is neither a facsimile nor a tracing, nor a rendering of it by any method of accurate reproduction. What the author supposed to be found on the stone, and what he supplied from conjecture, are both set down alike in coarse black letters apparently drawn with a brush. Words still plainly to be read on the stone reappear strangely, or even absurdly, transformed. The translation, naturally repeats the errors of this transcript, with, of course, others of its own.)

Schmitt, Père : Deux Anciennes Inscriptions Siamoises transcrites et traduites par M. Schmitt. Saigon 1885. (A little booklet apparently made up of reprints of the article just named, and of another from Vol. VII. of the same series ).

Pavie Auguste : Mission Pavie, Indo-Chine, 1879—1895. Études Diverses II. Paris 1898. pp. 176—201. (Introductory Note, transliteration, translation, and text by the author of the two preceding studies. It is in fact another edition of them, revised and altered somewhat, and with the text now in photographic reproduction. But for the scholar, the value of this text is very seriously diminished by the fact that it has everywhere been retouched, and that too, it would seem, without reference to the original, but to some inaccurate transcript—apparently the one twice published before. Similar changes of the text appear, and nearly all the lacunæ are written in so as to appear as text. Transliteration and translation are, of course, no more authentic than the text on which they are based—if it be not rather sometimes the case that the interpretation has determined the text.)

————— วจิรญาณ (Vajirañana Magazine, Vol. VI. pp. 3574—3577. Bangkok 1898. A short article embodying in a freely modernized version nearly the whole of the fourth face of the inscription, including the dates, the story of the origination of Siamese writing, and the boundaries of the realm.)

————— เรื่อง เมือง สุโขไท (Bangkok 1908. A pamphlet of 22 pages, prepared and printed for H. R. H. the Crown Prince, containing two inscriptions from Sŭkhothăi and one from Khămphæng Phĕt. The first of these, the one with which we are here concerned, is the text in modern Siamese characters and spelling, with occasional substitution of modern words. Here also there is no indication of what portions are conjectural. But upon the whole, I find it the least inaccurate text so far produced.)