Nederland en Thailand onderhouden al meer dan 400 jaar vriendschappelijke betrekkingen. Deze historische band is ontstaan in de tijd van de Verenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie (VOC). Joseph Jongen heeft daar recent nog een interessant artikel over geschreven.

Wat velen misschien niet weten is dat onze Koningin, tijdens haar staatsbezoek aan Thailand in 2004 geld geschonken heeft voor de bouw van een informatiecentrum over de activiteiten van de VOC in Siam. Het informatiecentrum annex museum wordt op dit moment gebouwd. Meer hierover lees in je een Engelstalige brochure gemaakt door de Nederlandse Ambassade in Bangkok. Het museum moet in 2011 gereed zijn en zal zeker een bezoek waard zijn voor iedereen die geïnteresseerd is in geschiedenis van zowel Nederland als Thailand.

Holland House Information Centre

The Dutch East India Company (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie, or VOC) founded in 1602 and liquidated in 1795 was the largest and most impressive of the early modern trading companies operating in Asia. The Dutch government authorised it to conduct trade, erect fortifications, wage wars, appoint governors, keep a standing army and conclude treaties in its name in the Asian trade zone between Iraq and Japan. Dutch VOC-merchants first arrived in Ayutthaya in 1604. The king allowed the Dutch to establish their first trading post in his capital Ayutthaya in 1608.

The VOC were the principal western traders in Siam in those days and bought tin, deerskins, rayskins, sappanwood, rice and many other products in Siam. The Company obtained the right to monopolize the hide business; thus, they were able to make a fortune from exporting hides to Japan. The Dutch were importers of luxery goods into Siam, such as Indian printed and painted textiles, but they also brought in Japanese silver.

Holland House Information Centre in Ayutthaya

The Dutch not only involved themselves in trade but also participated in Siamese society and politics, largely because such participation served their commercial ends. Their records offer a unique insight into 160 years of trade and diplomacy with the Kingdom of Siam. The huge archives of the VOC are an important source for Thai history, as they contain not only information on trade but also on diplomacy, and on the history and sociology of the Kingdom of Siam. The important chronicles by VOC employees such as Joost Schouten, Jeremias van Vliet and Engelbert Kaempfer bear witness of their profound interest in and knowledge of Siam. They are all translated into English and available in Thailand. The 17th century Dutch painter Johannes Vingboons produced a number of detailed maps of Ayutthaya (or Judea, as he called it).

By the 1630’s the Dutch received land and permission to build a lodge on the east bank of the Chaophraya river to the south of the city. The two-story structure, enclosed by a stockade, was known to the Dutch as de logie, and to the locals as teuk daeng, the red brick building. The Dutch settlement developed into a separate village. The French priest Nicolas Gervaise wrote that the Dutch quarter on the bank of the Chaophraya river ‘is the most elegant and the grandest of all in the Kingdom’. The building was destroyed by the invading Burmese armies in 1767. Before that the Company had moved its personnel and merchandise out of the Kingdom. Currently, only the foundations of the huge brick building remain.

During the celebrations of 400 years of Thai-Dutch relation (2004), H.M. Queen Beatrix and H.R.H. the Prince of Orange, accompanied by H.R.H. Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn visited the site. H.M. Queen Beatrix donated a royal gift to establish an information centre near the site of the Dutch lodge. The Thai Fine Arts Department excavated the site during 2003-2005 and in 2009-2010 and found many artifacts, such as Chinese porcelain, pottery, Dutch pipes and coins. In close cooperation with the Thai Fine Arts Department construction of the museum has begun in 2010. Construction will be finalized in 2011.

This Holland House Information Centre, and in Thai: Baan Hollanda, aims to educate audiences about the Dutch settlement, how they worked, lived and interacted with Siamese society and court. The goal is to tell the story of the Dutch in Ayutthaya in such a way to make it accessible to the Thai and foreign public. Together with the Portuguese and Japanese information centres the Baan Hollanda will be proof of the cosmopolitan character of the city of Ayutthaya, where dozens of ethnic groups, Asian and European, lived and worked under the Ayutthayan king’s sovereignty.

A team of excellent Thai and Dutch historians is working on the content of the exhibition, in cooperation with Thai museums and universities and a Dutch museum. To design and create a modern exhibition, with modern facilities, attractive to Thai and foreign visitors, extra funding will be necessary. Also funds will be necessary to ensure that the museum can be maintained in the future. A business plan has been made and a foundation in Thailand is being set up to collect the necessary extra funds. A website on the history of the Dutch in Ayutthaya and on the construction of the museum will be operational shortly. We welcome your support. Please contact ban-pcz@minbuza.nl and we will get in touch with you.

Bekijk de brochure: Holland House Information Centre Ayutthaya

Met dank aan Guyido Goedheer voor het toezenden van de informatie.

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3 reacties op “Holland House Information Centre in Ayutthaya”

  1. carrot zegt op

    Zeer interessant !

  2. Joris Geeven zegt op

    Kijk voor een filmpje over het Baan Hollanda museum op

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18VDZCLsIeE&feature=related

  3. Marco wienecke zegt op

    Ik kom net bij het holland huis vandaan, het ziet er erg mooi uit! Binnen zijn ze echter nog lang niet klaar en het is alweer 2012 🙂

    Ik zou wel willen weten wanneer eea af is hier !


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