Wat Bowonniwet

Wat Bowonniwet Vihara Rajavaravihara (Thai: วัดบวรนิเวศวิหารราชวรวิหาร; RTGS: Wat Bowon Niwet Wihan Ratchaworawihan, IPA: ) is a major Buddhist temple (wat) in Phra Nakhon district, Bangkok, Thailand. The temple is a center of the Thammayut Nikaya school of Thai Theravada Buddhism and has been a major temple of patronage for the Chakri dynasty. It is the shrine-hall of Phra Phutthachinasi (พระพุทธชินสีห์) which was moulded in about 1357.

Royal patronage

Prince Bhikkhu Mongkut arrived at the temple in 1836 (ordination name: Vajirañāṇo) and became the first abbot. He later acceeded to the throne of Siam as King Rama IV. His great grandson, King Bhumibol Adulyadej ordained at the Grand Palace (Wat Phra Kaew) and resided here for a short period after he became King. Bhumibol's mentor, Somdet Phra Yanasangworn, eventually became abbot of the temple, and later, the Supreme Patriarch of Thai Buddhism. Exiled dictator Thanom Kittikachorn returned to Thailand as a novice monk to join Wat Bowonniwet leading to large public demonstrations and a bloody crackdown in October 1976. King Bhumibol Adulyadej's son, Prince Vajiralongkorn was ordained and spent a short period at this temple, as well as several of the Prince's own sons.