July 24, 2013

0763 THAILAND (Buriram) - Prasat Hin Muang Tum - part of Phimai, its Cultural Route and the Associated Temples of Phanomroong and Muang Tum (UNESCO WHS - Tentative List)

Prasat Hin Muang Tum (in translation, according to some sources "stone castle of the humble city", and to others "low land castle") is a 1,000 years old Khmer temple complex, located in North East Thailand, near another better known Khmer complex, Phanom Rung, not far from the border with Cambodia. Built primarily in Angkor style, during a time when large parts of Thailand were controlled by the Khmer empire, in the late 10th and early 11th centuries, was created as a Hindu temple dedicated to Shiva, although Vishnu was also worshipped there.

Like most Khmer temples, Muang Tum is orientated towards the east, and it has a concentric plan, with a central sanctuary (with five towers made from sand stone - the tallest was collapsed) and two libraries surrounded successively by an inner enclosure, four ponds (with colorful water lilies and five headed Naga snakes placed at the corner of each pond), and an outer enclosure. At north of Prasat Muang Tum is a lake which symbolizes the ocean that surrounds Mount Meru, the center of the universe in Hindu cosmology. The complex was abandoned two or three centuries after it was completed.

About the stamps
The first stamp is part of a very interesting commemorative series, dedicated to the anniversary of the 100 Years of Thai Engineering, and issued on June 1st, 2013. The three stamps of the series (all with the same face value, 5 THB) was designed by Pisit Prasitthanadoon, and represents the bas-relief sculpture created by Professor Silpa Bhirasri (Corrado Feroci), reflecting the working and engineering equipment, located in Building No.1 of the College of Engineering, Chulalongkorn University:
• A bas-relief stucco on Civil Engineering
• A bas-relief stucco on Electrical Engineering - it's on this postcard
• A bas-relief stucco on Mechanical Engineering

The second stamp was issued on December 1st, 2012 in honor of Princess Chulabhorn Walailak, the youngest daughter of King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Queen Sirikit of Thailand, heavily involved in the promotion of scientific research. Designed by Parichart Thatsanatheb, the stamp has the face value of 5 THB.

The third stamp is part of a series issued on March 22, 2013 to commemorate the 2013 World Stamp Exhibition. It is the second series with this theme, and if in the first was used local art, this one present another branch of valuable arts, Royal Craftsmanship Arts. All the eight stamps, designed by Udorn Niyomthum, have the same face value, 5 THB:
• Gilded Black Lacquer or so called in Thai "Lai Rot Nam" technique
• Plastering
• Modeling Khon Mask
• Mother-of-Pearl Inlay - it's on this postcard
• Metal Beating
• Moulding and Sculpting
• Wood Engraving
• Mirrored-Glass Inlay

Muang Tum - Wikipedia
Muang Tum - Renown Travel
Prasat Muang Tum - Thai folk
100 Years of Thai Engineering Commemorative Stamps - Siam Stamp Catalogue
Her Royal Highness Princess Chulabhorn Commemorative Stamp - Siam Stamp Catalogue
THAILAND 2013 World Stamp Exhibition Commemorative Stamps (2nd Series) - Royal Craftsmanship Arts - Siam Stamp Catalogue 

Sender: Pitcha Chongkul (won in a lottery)
Sent from Kanchanaburi (Kanchanaburi / Thailand), on 03.07.2013

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