1868, Thailand, Rama IV. Silver Salung (1/4 Baht) Bullet Money Coin. F+
Ruler: Rama IV
Mint Period: 1851-1868
Denomination: Salung (1/4 Baht)
Reference: Mitchiner 2889, KM-135.
Countermark motives: Chakra (dynastic mark) / Mongkut (Siamese royal crown).
Obverse: Chakra (dynastic mark).
Reverse: Mongkut (Siamese royal crown)
Before 1860, Thailand did not produce coins using modern methods. Instead, a so-called "bullet" coinage was used, consisting of bars of metal, thicker in the middle, bent round to form a complete circle on which identifying marks were stamped.
Phra Bat Somdet Phra Poramenthramaha Mongkut Phra Chom Klao Chao Yu Hua (Thai: พระบาทสมเด็จพระปรเมนทรมหามงกุฎฯ พระจอมเกล้าเจ้าอยู่หัว), or Rama IV, known in foreign countries as King Mongkut (18 October 1804 – 1 October 1868), was the fourth monarch of Siam (Thailand) under the House of Chakri, ruling from 1851-1868. He was one of the most revered monarchs of the country.
Outside of Thailand, he is best-known as the King in the 1951 play and 1956 film The King and I, based on the 1946 film Anna and the King of Siam – in turn based on Anna Leonowens' 1944 book of about her years at his court, from 1862 to 1867.
During his reign, the pressure of Western expansionism was felt for the first time in Siam. Mongkut embraced Western innovations and initiated the modernization of Siam, both in technology and culture—earning him the nickname "The Father of Science and Technology" in Siam.
Mongkut was also known for his appointment of his brother, Prince Chutamani, as vice-king. Prince Chutney was crowned in 1851 as King Pinklao. Mongkut himself assured the country that Pinklao should be respected with equal honor to himself. Mongkut's reign was also the time when the power of the House of Bunnag reached its zenith and became the most powerful noble family of Siam.
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