Diary of Kosa Pan (Ok-Phra Wisut Sunthon) Thai Ambassador to France, June-July 1686, Theby Dirk Van der Cruysse
Translated by Visudh Busayakul
Edited by Michael Smithies
This account from Kosa Pan's journal describes in great detail the arrival in Brest in 1686 of the first full Siamese embassy• to reach France. The author is the first ambassador of that embassy, also known as the rachathut Ok-phra Wisut Sunthon, who became phra khlang in 1688 under King Phetracha after the death of King Narai This fragment is apparently all that survives of a massive report of the activities of the embassy written for King Narai. It was accidentally discovered in Paris in the early 19 80S, was published in Thai in 1984, and appears here in English for the first time.
The original translation by Professor Visudh Busayakul has been edited by Professors Dirk Van der Cruysse and Michael Smithies and given extensive explanatory notes.
DIRK VAN DER CRUYSSE, of the Royal Academy of Belgium, is Full Professor at the University of Antwerp, where he teaches the history of French culture and French literature. He is best known in Southeast Asia for his Louis XIV et le Siam, now published in English as Siam and the West, 1500–1700.
MICHAEL SMITHIES, former editor of the Journal of the Siam Society, is the author of numerous books and articles on the French involvement in Siam in the seventeenth century. He retired from the United Nations in Bangkok in 1992.