House of Abhaiwongse

Abhayavongsa (Thai: อภัยวงศ์; RTGSAphaiwong) is a Thai noble surname used by a Thai family[1] that formerly governed parts of Cambodia which was then ruled by Siam.

House of Abhayavongsa
Country Siam
Current regionPrachinburi
Place of originCambodia
FounderChaophraya Aphaiphubet (Baen)
Final rulerChaophraya Aphaiphubet (Chum Aphaiwong)
TitlesGovernor of Phra Tabong (1794–1907)
Prime minister of Thailand (1944–1945, 1946, 1947–1948)
Connected familiesHouse of Chakri
House of Varman
House of Bunnag
Sinhaseni family
Kanlayanamit family
Sukhum family

The Abhayavongsa family governed Phra Tabong Province, Thailand (modern Battambang Province, Cambodia) for six generations from the late 18th century, when Siam annexed the Khmer territories, until 1907, when the area was ceded to French Indochina effectively reuniting it with Cambodia. The title bestowed by the Thai King to the governor of Phra Tabong which was used by each successive governor was Chao Phraya Abhaibhubejr (Thai: เจ้าพระยาอภัยภูเบศร์).[citation needed]

In later years, the Abhayavongsa family played important roles in the anti-French struggle for Cambodian independence and one descendant became Prime Minister of Thailand. During World War II, Thailand regained control of the western Khmer provinces through Japanese mediation. Khuang Abhayavongsa was elected Prime Minister of Thailand, an office which he held three separate times between August 1944 and April 1948. Through family business ties, Khuang maintained close ties with the western Cambodian provinces during his time in office and fought, to no avail, to keep them under Thai rule in the wake of the Japanese loss and resurgence of the French in Indochina. His brother Chaowalit Aphaiwong worked until 1946 in a "Special Commission" in Battambang and was considered the "Nominal Head of the Khmer Issarak movement" fighting French rule of Cambodia. The official head of the Khmer Issarak movement was Phiset Phanit (Pokhun), Khuang's brother-in-law. A French report of the era went so far as to claim "[t]he Khmer Issarak movement is both a political and commercial affair of the Aphaiwong family".[2] Thus, in the late 1940's, the Khmer nationalist Bun Chanmol married a princess of the House of Abhaiwongse.

Family membersEdit

Members of the Abhayavongsa family include:


  1. ^ Goscha, Christopher E. (1999). Thailand and the Southeast Asian Networks of the Vietnamese Revolution, 1885-1954. Surrey, UK: Curzon Press, Nordic Institute of Asian Studies. p. 123. ISBN 0700706224. Retrieved 3 Dec 2013.
  2. ^ Goscha. pg 165
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h Rungswasdisab, Puangthong (1995). War and trade: Siamese interventions in Cambodia, 1767-1851. p. 213.
  4. ^ Rungswasdisab, Puangthong (1995). War and trade: Siamese interventions in Cambodia, 1767-1851. p. 185.
  5. ^ Princess Bejaratana