gaan khaeng reua yao
gaan nuat paen boraan (การนวดแผนโบราณ)
‘Massage according ancient plan’. Thai name for
traditional massage. Also
nuat paen boraan.
The recessed face of a pediment or
fronton, situated between the two slanting roof edges and the horizontal tie beam.
In Thailand, gable boards are the triangular
parts on either end of the roof of important buildings, and are usually carved from
wood. In temple and palace buildings, the gable board often has a carved motif,
which is usually covered with
gold leaf or decorated
with glass (fig.) and glazed pottery, or made from cement. In traditional Thai buildings, the gable board is usually a decorated woodcarving with mythological figures, and on Buddhist temples it is usually a colourful
bas-relief with symbols (fig.), characters or deities from mythology. Old and antique gable boards are often used as mural decorations in modern houses in eastern style (fig.).
A gable board is are also known as a
tympanum, and in
Thai it is referred to as nahban (หน้าบัน).
also POSTAGE STAMPS.
Common name for the
Spiny Bitter Gourd (fig.),
which in English is sometimes referred to as the Gac fruit, and in Thai known as
In Vietnamese it is pronounced guc (geuk).
Initially the fruit has a thick yellow skin with large spikes (fig.),
but it becomes a dark orange upon ripening and the spikes wane. On the
inside, ripe fruits
have orange flesh of fruit and dark red
aril surrounding the seeds (fig.),
Vietnam is used
as an ingredient to prepare a dish of
sticky rice known as xoi gac
xoi gac (fig.).
Sanskrit. A club or mace, one of
It represents wind, one of the four elements, and as such it is used by
Vishnu to create wind, by reeling it around in the air.
Besides this, the mace is the main weapon of many a
In novel Indian
gada is often depicted with a globular, bulbous end. In Thai
gado bwe (ကန်တော့ပွဲ)
Burmese. An offertory or offering
that consists of hands of
bananas and a single
coconut, decoratively arranged in a basket or onto a
tray, and typically used as an offertory to the
transliterated kado pwe. See also
name for a wind
instrument, made from a
bottle gourd and with multiple, semi-long to long reeds or
bamboo pipes, as is used by
certain hill tribes in northern Thailand, who often dance and swing the
instrument from side to side while playing. Due to the multiple pipes, its sound
this instrument is known as
lu sheng (fig.)
and comparable to the smaller
The instrument's body can also be made from hardwood, instead of using a gourd.
The word gaeng is somewhat reminiscent of
the Thai word
a similar wind instrument from
and which is possibly related,
perhaps even also linguistically, as a cross between the words kaen and sheng.
Sanskrit word for ‘elephant’. It often
occurs in compound words and names, especially for
‘One resembling an elephant’. A name for
Sanskrit. ‘Elephant fore-arm’. A compound
made up of
gaja, meaning ‘elephant’,
and hasta, which has a variety of meanings, such as ‘fore-arm’, ‘hand’,
‘hand-writing’, ‘abundance’, etc. The term is used in
to refer to a pose, in which
one holds one arm across the chest, with the wrist limp and the fingers pointed
downward, as depicted with
when he crushes the dwarf-demon
represents ignorance, i.e. ignorance that makes one lose ones
balance and which is thus countered by Nataraja, making a gajahasta. The term
also occurs in
where it used in reference to arm balance. In English, it is known as the
elephant trunk pose. See also
[with] elephants’. A representation of the goddess
seated on a lotus base (fig.)
and holding two
one in each hand
and flanked by two elephants, which are known in Pali as gaja. A similar
representation, in which Lakshmi is doused with water by the two elephants is
Abhisheka of Sri
Sanskrit. ‘With the face of an elephant’ or ‘elephant-faced’. An
Also pronounced and spelled and Gajamuk. See also
Thai-Sanskrit-Pali name of an elephant-faced demon, who fought
with the Hindu god
was defeated and then disguised himself as a
and ran away. However, Ganesha caught him and
used him as his mount or
The demon's name is a compound of
Gajamukha and a
form of the Thai word for
i.e. asun. Also transcribed Gajamukhasoon and Kodchamukhasoon. See also
Another name for
Sanskrit for ‘elephant trunk’, a compound
made up of
gaja, meaning ‘elephant’,
and nasa, of which the English words nose and nasal are derived. The term
is also used in Hindu
to refer to the
elephant trunk pose,
a pose in which they one holds one arm across the chest, with the wrist
limp and the fingers pointed downward, as depicted with
In some literature referred to as
gajahasta, i.e. ‘elephant fore-arm’.
A name for
Pali. A mythological
lion with the head of an elephant
Its name is a compound of
(lion). There are two kinds which in Thai have different names: one
the other Takkatoh (fig.).
The difference between the two is that the Takkatoh has a goatee and furry hair
on the top of its head. There is also a Gajasingha
with a body covered in scales (fig.),
features reminiscent of the
THEMATIC STREET LIGHTS (1)
galamplee (กล่ำปลี, กะหล่ำปลี)
part of the
system of an
animal-per-day, which in Thai is known as
sat prajam wan,
and in which it represents Sunday
Also transliterated Galone or Galon.
Thai. Name of one of the seven
guardian spirits that looks out for children and that are generally
thevada guards all the children that are born on a
Thursday and is represented with a pale yellow human-like body and
the head of
Galyani Vadhana (กัลยาณิวัฒนา)
Galyani Watthana (กัลยาณิวัฒนา)
name of the elder sister of King
(fig.), the only daughter
and Sangwan Talabhat (Sri Nakarin), and a direct granddaughter of King
Her first name Galyani comes from Pali and means ‘beautiful woman’, whereas the Thai
word Watthana means ‘prosperity’ or ‘development’. She was born in London on 6
May 1923 and passed away in
Bangkok on 2 January 2008. Her favourite colour was
navy-blue, which was used as background of her personal flag, rather than red,
the colour of her birthday, i.e. Sunday (see
sih prajam wan).
Her initials on the flag consist of a white G (ก) and light-blue W (ว), which are
strongly stylized and placed underneath a small golden (orange) crown. She graduated in the field of science and academic
chemistry, and was also knowledgeable in foreign language and literature,
particularly in English and French. After the death of the Princess Mother, she
continued her mother's work in the activities of the Foundation of Voluntary
Doctors, which main objective is to provide medical care, especially to people
in the more remote areas of the country. Often spelled Galyani
Vadhana. See also
Phra Mae Naak Galyanih.
name for Cannabis sativa, a plant of the Cannabaceae family, commonly known as cannabis, marihuana, hashish and hemp,
and which is cultivated as a source of industrial fibre and hemp oil, or as a
drug or medicine. Whereas its use as a drug is illegal in Thailand, the plant is
nevertheless cultivated for its fibre,
as part of a royal project under the auspices of Queen
and in order to support the northern hill tribes, especially the
plant's long stems and little branching produce ideal fibres,
which are mostly used to make hemp cord, shoes, sacks and bags (fig.). Due to the plants illicit substance, known as tetra-hydro-cannabinol
and which is mainly present in its flowers and leaves, hemp fibres were
previously imported from
According to Thai law, the plants are illegal if they contain more than 0.3% of
THC. By genetically manipulating the plant and lowering the levels of THC within
this margin, it can now be grown legally in Thailand, thanks to the Queen's
project. Whilst in Thai the natural plant is called gancha only when containing
high levels of THC, the modified version
used for its fibres is usually referred to as
or alternatively as hemp (เฮมพ์),
taken from English. In Nepal,
cannabis plants are found growing abundantly in the wild, often on the sides of roads and streets,
and –even though since 1973 also illegal in Nepal– many Nepalese
smoke the drug, especially during the festival of
claiming that it brings them closer to the god
who is often represented in
with his eyes half-closed (fig.),
as if in a daze, which some allude is caused by the consumption of cannabis,
though others see in it a reference to his constant state of meditation.
Though in 2021, Thailand
started to relax its laws for the use and cultivation of low level THC marihuana
for medicinal use, the recreational psychoactive drug with high levels of THC
still remains an illicit drug. See also
bong gancha and
name for Cannabis sativa, a plant of the Cannabaceae family, commonly known as
hemp, yet only if it is of the genetically manipulated kind with levels of
tetra-hydro-cannabinol (THC) lower than 0.3%, which is cultivated as a source of industrial fibre
and hemp oil, otherwise it is referred to as
and considered an
illicit psychoactive drug.
Indian art style that developed during the Kushan period, from the first to second centuries AD. It is distinguished by depictions of the
Buddha with realistic features, wearing draped robes (fig.), reflecting Greek influence.
mudra ‘calling upon the rain’ with the right hand, whilst the left hand is held at the waist forming a bowl to
‘collect the rainfall’. This mudra is usually found with statues from the
Rattanakosin period. Also gandhararath and in Thai
Sanskrit. Male half-gods and celestial musicians who in Hindi mythology are accompanied by the female
They are the guardians of the
soma. Generally considered
aerial spirits who live in the firmament and reveal the Divine Truth in the form
of a celestial rain. In Pali called gandhabbas.
Leader of the
Indian nationalist movement against British governance, who –influenced by
Hinduism, as well as by elements of
used non-violent protest to achieve his political goals, as well as social
progress. He was born on 2 October 1869 as Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (fig.), but
became known as
Mahatma Gandhi. He
was schooled as a lawyer in London and in 1893 accepted a position at an Indian
law firm in South Africa, where he became involved in the struggle to obtain
basic civil rights for Indian immigrants, while trying to redress wrongs with
social justice. Soon after his return to India, he became involved in
political activism and by 1920 was a dominant figure in Indian politics,
contesting British rule by means of
i.e. non-violence and non-cooperation as a
political expedient, such as civil resistance and boycotts of British goods and institutions. In June
1947, the British Mountbatten Plan divided British India along religious lines,
Hindu and Islamic, into two new independent states, i.e. India and
Pakistan. Massive inter-communal violence marred the months before and after
the independence. Unhappy with to partition, Gandhi fasted in an attempt to bring
calm and in trying to stop the carnage between
Muslims and Hindus, as well as
Sikhs. On 30 January 1948,
Gandhi was assassinated at his residence in Delhi (map
- fig.) by a Hindu fanatic, who deemed him a traitor
for his alleged siding with the Muslims. For his involvement in the struggle
leading to India's independence, Gandhi is seen as the Father of the Nation and
memorials, such as at
fig.) and statues of the man can be found all over India, whilst his picture is printed on
each of the country's current banknotes. In Thailand, his wax image is on
display at the
Thai Human Imagery Museum
Nakhon Pathom (map
Sanskrit. Magical bow that
Arjuna received as a reward for helping
Krishna burn down Khandava forest.
Sanskrit. ‘Lord of hordes’, a compound name made up of and the word gana, meaning
‘horde’ and isha meaning ‘lord’ or ‘ruler’.
Sanskrit. Goddess personifying the river Ganga or
Ganges in India.
She is one of two daughters of the sacred golden mountain
Meru, the other being
Her symbol is the
may also take the shape of a
In Thai, she is called
The river Ganges is considered sacred by
Hindus, with healing and other holy
It has the recursive property that any water mixed with even the minutest
quantity of Ganga water becomes Ganga water, which is so holy that even the
greatest of sins may be washed away by bathing in it. Initially Ganga resided in
the Heavens, but king Bhagiratha of
seeking to find salvation for his ancestors who were cursed by the sage Kapila,
persuaded her to come down to Earth to wash out the sins of the humans and make
the whole earth virtuous and fertile. To break Ganga's fall on her descend to
Earth, she had to come through the
jata (matted hair) of the god
Shiva. According to Hindu belief, this descend happened
in a place known today as Gangotri. See also
River in India considered sacred by Hindus
The river also has purifying powers
and for this reason Hindus throw their dead into it, or alternatively burn them
(fig.). In mythology,
the river is personified by the goddess
who in Thai is called
Though the source of the river is in an unknown place high in the mountains, it
is first referred to by the name Ganges at Dev
Prayag, a place located at the confluence of
two rivers, known only by their local names as Alaknanda and Bhagirathi.
Each morning at dawn, as well
as in the evening,
gather at the
along (or in boats on) the
River in Varanasi (map), for a
ritual known as Aarti, in which
brahmin priests, bless
this river (fig.),
while devotees offer the river tiny
dipa-like candle lights, with wicks soaked in
Indian clarified butter, by setting them afloat (fig.). The
Ganges is also nicknamed Celestial River and
Jahnavi. See also
Common name for a species of freshwater
fish, with the scientific designation Anabas cobojius.
Tibetan term for
decorated gable roof, as found on a sedan chair or on the central portion of a
state barge in Thailand. In Thai a state barge is called
reua ganya. Also kanya.
garbhagrha (गर्भगॄह, ครรภคฤหะ)
Sanskrit. ‘Womb house’. The innermost sanctuary of a
temple in which the main deity is enshrined and which is located at the meeting
point of the vertical and horizontal axis of the temple. It is unlit and has no
windows, and is illuminated only by the dim light that penetrates though the
door. Only Hindu temple priests, known as
are allowed to enter it. The term is also used to refer to the square inner chamber of a
as well as to a series of
individual shrines that house deities as found in most Hindu temples. Also
spelled garbhagriha or garbha griha.
of an abandoned rail bridge over
Chao Phraya River
which has been made into an elevated garden.
Garden Fence Lizard
king kah hua daeng.
Japanese term for slices of pickled
a type of
tsukemono, i.e. a Japanese generic name for
pickled vegetables. It is typically served or consumed with
dok gui chai.
One of the two leaders (fig.) who in 953 AD founded the city of
Phitsanulok, the other being
Nokrong (fig.). Also
Sanskrit. A large and savage mythological bird, mount of the Hindu god
Gason Singh (กาสรสิงห์)
Thai-Pali. Another name
Also transcribed Garsorn Singha.
Gastroenterological Association of Thailand
Organization founded by Professor Vikit
Viranuvatti (วีกิจ วีรานุวัตติ์), a pioneer of modern medicine and the virtual
father of gastroenterology in Thailand, on 19 July 1960. The association was
founded with the aim to promote the advancement of the scientific knowledge in
gastroenterology, a branch of medicine that focuses on the digestive system and
its disorders and provides standard care for patients, clinical translational
research, training programs, continued medical education, and annual meetings.
It also promotes the highest ethical standards of medical practice and social
responsibility, as well as health education related to gastroenterological and
liver diseases. In general, referred to by the abbreviation GAT and in Thai,
samahkhom phaet rabob thaang deun ahaan haeng prathet thai.
Gate of Hell
Gui Men Guan.
Name of a species of butterfly, with the binomial name
Burmese. ‘To wrap or tie a turban around the
head’. Designation for the
i.e. a ceremonial headdress that consists of a
or cotton piece of cloth, that
traditionally was wrapped tidily around the head in a clockwise manner and with a
on the right side (from the wearer's point of view), though modern
versions are wrapped onto a rattan frame and ready to wear, like a hat. The tongues may be either drooping or fanned out
(fig.), depending on the characteristic
style intended by its wearer, which is usually related to his role or position,
or his relevant ethnical group, thus distinguishing
themselves from each other. The
turban is also often worn by male
traditional musicians, as well as by
the male classical dancers performing in
Also transcribed without the hyphen, i.e. gaung baung or gaungbaung.
Sanskrit. ‘The best ox’. Patronymic or family name of the historical
−though not always− used in texts and names of Buddha images to refer to the Buddha before he attained
Enlightenment. He is the fourth of five great teacher-buddhas and was born in the region of present day India and Nepal. His full name as the prince of the
Shakya clan is
Siddhartha Gautama, son of
Gautama. Also spelled Gotama.
Sanskrit. The sister of prince
Siddhartha's mother, who became Siddhartha's guardian when his mother died, seven days after his birth. She later married his father
Suddhodana. Also known as
Gawdawpalin Phaya (ကန်တော့ပလ္လင်ဘုရား)
of the Worshipped Throne’.
Name of an 11th Century AD Buddhist temple in Old Bagan.
Gaysorn Singha (เกสรสิงห์)
Chinese term for a ‘dagger-ax’ (fig.),
and sometimes translated as ‘halberd’, ‘spear’ or ‘lance’. A type of ancient
weapon used in the Qin Dynasty period and which consists of a boomerang-shaped
blade made of bronze and later of iron, which is affixed by the tang of the
dagger to an upright wooden shaft. In combination with a spear or lance (fig.),
it is also referred to as
ji. The character ge is also a Chinese
look yahng pah.
General Post Office
Bangkok's main post
office, located on
Road in Bang Rak district. It was built in the Neoclassic and Functionalist
and officially opened on 24 June 1940. Both the building's facade and its metal
are decorated with figures of
a mythological compound animal, half bird half man, which –besides being the
royal emblem (fig.)–
was in 1924 and '36 also used as the design on Siamese Airmail postage stamps (fig.).
Over the central door is the
current logo of the
Thailand Post, which consists of an envelop in
the form of a paper airplane, made in
white and blue,
the national colours of Thailand (fig.).
On the inside, the main hall
stuccos of Thai postage stamps, including
the First Issue (fig.);
a stucco stamp depicting
issued to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the
a Thai postage stamp of
with a face value of 1
of 2 At (fig.),
and one with a face value of 1
as well as a stamp of
with a face value of 3
In the centre, in the front of the building,
pedestal with a
statue of Prince
the founder of the Thai postal service. In 2013, the building was renovated to
celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Thailand Post, and the 130th anniversary
of postal service in Thailand, an event presided over by Princess
In Thai, known as Praisanih Klahng (ไปรษณีย์กลาง).
Treaty signed in 1954, that
ended the Indochina War
North and South at the 17th Parallel.
Name of a blind American teacher, who on 12
January 1939 founded the
Geson Singh (เกสรสิงห์)
name of a mythological creature from
Himaphan forest, that
has the body of a
and the hoofed legs of an ox. It is usually
depicted with a grey coloured fur. It is similar in appearance to the
Tinna Siha. Often transcribed Gaysorn Singha and sometimes called simply Geson or Gaysorn. It is also known as
which in English is often transliterated Garsorn Singha.
It appears on a Thai
postage stamp issued in 1998 (fig.).
Thai-Pali. Name of a monkey-warrior
that appears in the
belongs to the camp of
Meuang Khiet Kheun (เมืองขีดขิน),
which is ruled by
has a golden or pale
He is one of the eighteen
Wahnon Sip-paet Mongkut, and an
of the demon
Also transliterated Gasonthamala or Gaysornthamala.
1. Chinese art of divination by lines and figures, used to determine the correct placing of objects and buildings. See also
2. Prophecy by drawing lines in earth or sand.
Thai-Pali. Name of
He is an ally of
belongs to the camp of Meuang Khiet Kheun (เมืองขีดขิน),
which is ruled by
is has a
dark purple fur
He is one of the
Wahnon Sip-paet Mongkut,
Indian bell used in
Buddhist rituals. Its sound symbolizes existence, and as an
attribute of the Hindu god
Shiva it is a symbol of creation. In Buddhism, it may
also represent wisdom
and as such, the handle is usually shaped in the form of a
vajra. If so, it is referred to as
Vajraghanta (fig.) or
The latter is in
iconography sometimes depicted held in the hand of a deity
or ‘valley’. An Indian architectural feature consisting of steps or a platform at the edge
or banks of a –usually sacred– waterway or reservoir and used for worship (fig.),
cremation of the dead, bathing, and doing the laundry. Often all the previous
described actions take place simultaneously within meters distance of each
other, without anyone seeming to care which direction the current goes or comes
from, or what it brings along. Since ghats are commonly used to burn the dead,
the word is also applied to name memorials, e.g.
Raj Ghat in Delhi, the black marble platform that marks the spot on
the banks of the
Yamuna River, where
Gandhi (fig.) was
- fig.). Compare also with
In addition, the term is also used to refer to the mountain ranges that run
North to South along the edges of the Deccan Plateau and parallel to the western
and eastern coastal borders of the Indian subcontinent. Thus, there are the
Western Ghats, that run more or less parallel to the coast of the Arabian Sea,
and the Eastern Ghats, that roughly run parallel to the eastern coastline, along
the Bay of Bengal.
ghaghra choli (घाघरा चोली)
‘Skirt-bodice’. The favourite female attire worn during weddings, festivals and special events in
India, especially in the North. It is usually made a
silk or another quality
fabric, and heavily decorated with embroidery, while the brides will
additionally decorate themselves with bridal make-up, heavy jewellery,
(fig.), and apply
to their hands and feet. Also known as
lehenga choli. See also
takkataen tam khao.
Giant Asian Pond Turtle
Name of a
(fig.) which is known by the Latin name Heosemys grandis or,
previously, Geoemyda grandis. Adults are characterized by a brown to olive gray
carapace, with a typical pale vertebral keel on the dorsal midline, as well as
blunted spikes at the posterior edges of the carapace.
The plastron, the nearly flat part of the shell structure on its underside, is
dark yellowish with black lines, radiating outward like a folding fan, from a
black blotch on each scute (plate). Note though that the black lines on the
plastron sometimes disappear in older animals, whilst the colour of their
carapace might also fade. This freshwater turtle is found on mainland Southeast
Asia, from Singapore to the borders of southern
China, and from eastern
Vietnam, thus including
Thailand. It lives in
rivers, streams, swamps and
rice paddies, as well as hidden among vegetation on land, from
estuarine lowlands to moderate altitudes, up to an altitude of about 400 meters.
Sadly, this vulnerable species is reaching the Asian food markets in record
numbers, as well as being endangered by a rampant illegal trade, for medicines
and illegal pet trade. Yet, some find refuge in the ponds of Buddhist temples.
Its diet is mostly herbivorous, feeding on fruit, vegetation and leaves,
especially those of the
though it sometimes behaves omnivorous, feeding also on insects and prawns. In
Thailand it is protected by law and is called
tao waai, meaning ‘rattan turtle’, and to a
lesser extend also
tao ban, which translates as ‘house turtle’. Due to some
orange spots on its head, the Giant Asian Pond Turtle is also known as the
Orange-headed Temple Terrapin. Its appearance is comparable to the
Spiny Turtle (Heosemys spinosa), the Stripe-necked Leaf Turtle (Cyclemys
tcheponensis) and the
Asian Leaf Turtle (Cyclemys dentata -
fig.), and is in a few
sources it is referred to as the Giant Leaf Turtle. See also
Yellow-headed Temple Turtle.
Common name for a species of catfish with
the scientific designation Pangasianodon gigas and belonging to the family Pangasiidae, i.e. Shark Catfishes, so-called for their often high and triangular
dorsal fin which is located far forward, reminiscent of that of sharks (fig.).
Unlike true catfish, which typically have prominent barbels, i.e. whisker-like
sensory organs near the mouth, only juveniles have well-developed barbels, while
those in adult and subadult Giant Catfish are only/ rudimentary. The Giant
Catfish is found in
the lower half of the
Mae Khong River,
as well as occasionally in the
Chao Phraya River. Measuring up to 320
centimeters in length and weighing around 300 kilograms, it is alleged to be the world’s
largest known freshwater fish, though the largest confirmed individual caught
since record-keeping began measured only 270 centimeters and weighed 293
kilograms. It is also referred to as the Mae Khong Giant Catfish, and in Thai
pla beuk yak,
pla dook yak, or
mae nahm khong (ปลาบึกยักษ์แม่น้ำโขง).
also POSTAGE STAMP
TRAVEL PICTURE (1)
Common name for any earthworm of the genus Pheretima,
of which there are about 1,000 species, together referred to as pheretimoid
Giant Indian Milkweed
Common name of an up to 4 meter tall shrub (fig.),
which is found in South, East and Southeast Asia. It has yellowish-green stalks and
light green, oval-shaped leaves, that are covered with tiny, whitish, down-like
hairs, as well as clusters of waxy flowers, with five pointed petals and a
small, quadrangular, bell-shaped crown at its centre. The flowers can be either
white (fig.) or purple in colour and in Thailand, where they are called
dok rak (fig.),
the inner part of the flower is used for the making of garlands called
puang malai, especially as part of
u-ba, as well as for decorative nets or
frame-like constructions of stringed flowers arrangements called
kreuang khwaen (fig.).
Like other milkweeds, this lactiferous shrub produces a milky liquid. Latex from
its stem, which is reportedly irritable, is also applied topically to treat
certain skin conditions, such as ringworm and tinea versicolor, and purportedly
may have some other medicinal qualities, with claims made for effective
treatment against eczema, toothache, earache, etc. The Giant Indian Milkweed
hosts a variety of insects, such as bees and butterflies, especially those of
the subfamily Danainae, i.e. milkweed butterflies, that feed on milkweeds and
belong to the family Nymphalidae. This large erect shrub grows wild in urban
empty lots and along windswept areas, such as barren wastelands and seashores. It is also commonly known as
Crown Flower or Purple Crown
Flower and has the botanical name
Calotropis gigantea. Whereas the flowers of this
shrub are in Thai called dok rak, the shrub itself is referred to as mai phum
i.e. ‘love shrub’.
Common name of a subtropical to tropical insect widespread
in Southeast Asia, that mimics as a leaf. It has a flattened, broad, green body
and legs, sometimes with brown markings or spots. Males are about 4.5 to 4.6
centimeters large, whilst females are much larger, measuring between 6.7 to 9.4
centimeters. Though able to fly, they are often found in forest vegetation,
hanging still between genuine leaves (fig.). It is also commonly known by a variety of
synonyms, including Javan Leaf-insect and Gray’s Leaf-insect. Its scientific
names are also numerous and include Phyllium bioculatum, Phyllium pulchrifolium,
Phyllium giganteum, and so forth, though some of these names are occasionally
used refer to subspecies, whereas the term Giant Leaf-insect is often used
exclusively for the Phyllium giganteum. With males of the latter measuring
around 7 centimeters and females up to 10.5 centimeters, it is the largest
known leaf-insect and is found only on the Malay Peninsula. In Thai known as malaeng bai mai yai (แมลงใบไม้ใหญ่), meaning ‘large
leaf-insect’, though sometimes also referred to as
takkataen bai mai (ตั๊กแตนใบไม้),
Golden Orb-web Spider.
Giant River Prawn
Common name for a species of large
freshwater crustacean, with the scientific designation
that can grow to a length of over 30 centimetres.
It is native to Southeast Asia, as well as
to the northern Australia and Indo-Pacific region, and is farmed or caught
commercially for food.
Whereas these shrimps live most of their lives in freshwater, at the larval
stage and as juveniles, these animals depend on brackish water, where they feed
on plankton. Their bodies have a grey and pale greenish-blue to purple shell,
and whereas small males have nearly translucent claws, full-grown adults have
large, mostly blue claws, with chelipeds (legs bearing claws) that may grow
twice the size of their bodies, while prawns in the intermediate stage have
mostly orange claws. Also known as Giant Freshwater Prawn or Malaysian Prawn,
and in Thai referred to as
kung kaam kraam
kung mae nahm.
See also POSTAGE STAMPS.
Giant Stag Beetle
Name for a species of gigantic stag beetle in the Lucanidae family, with
the scientific designation Dorcus titanus, and of which there are several
subspecies, the largest being Dorcus titanus palawanicus from the Palawan
Islands on the Philippines, followed by Dorcus titanus titanus, which is found
on the Indonesian island of Sumatra. These beetles are black in colour and
usually have long, notched and sometimes partly serrated jaws, depending on the
variety, age and gender. Due to the fact that some Asian cultures believe these
beetles have aphrodisiac properties, export from the Palawan Islands is illegal.
In Thailand, these bark beetles are also popular, but rather as pets, and are in
Thai on the whole named
duang kihm fan leuay, i.e. ‘sawtooth
Name of a huge swing in
Bangkok, on the plaza in front of
Wat Suthat. It was formerly used during a Brahman festival in honour of the Hindu god
Shiva, in which participants tried to reach a sack of gold attached to a fifteen meter high
bamboo pole. It was held in the second lunar month, from the morning of the third day until the evening of the ninth day of the new moon. Due to the large number of people falling off the swing the festival was banned during the reign of king
In 2007, the old Giant Swing (fig.) was replaced with a new one. In Thai,
called sao chingchah and
lohchingchah. See also
Giant Uranid Moth
for a large moth of which there are two species, i.e. Lyssa zampa
or Nyctalemon zampa (fig.) and Lyssa
menoetius or Nyctalemon menoetius. This fast flying moth has a wingspan of 14-16 centimeters.
Female Giant Uranid Moths are pale brown with a white tail and a narrow pale to
white band on the upper and lower wings, whereas males are similar, but of a
darker brown colour (fig.). It was previous a Thai protected species, but after
revision of the protected wild animal list in 2003, the species was no longer
considered endangered and scraped from the list. The main difference between the
two species is that the pale to white band on the upper and lower wings of Lyssa zampa are much narrower than those of Lyssa
menoetius, and the
latter also has a tiny brown stripe on the otherwise white tailtip.
In Thai, Lyssa
zampa is known as
phi seua klahng keun kahng kahw thammada,
Lyssa menoetius is called
phi seua klahng keun kahng kahw pak tai, which
translates as ‘southern bat moth’.
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES.
Giant Water Bug
Giant Wood Spider
Golden Orb-web Spider.
Vietnamese. Name of an ethnic minority
group, that lives primarily in
Vietnam's Central Highlands and with an estimated
population of around 350,000. They live in concentration in Gia Lai, while some
dwell in Kon Tum Provinces and northern Dak Lak Province, and pockets of a few
thousand are found in
Their language is related to that of the
E De and the
Cham, and belongs to the
The Gia Rai traditionally live in villages that are laid out in a square and in
houses arranged around a communal centre, which often has a communal house.
Though their number of Christian converts is estimated at around 100,000, the
who believe in the existence
of genies, whom they refer to as Giang. To appease them, they perform many
rituals in daily life and periodically also sacrifice animals. The Gia Rai have
a matrilineal culture, in which the lineage is traced through the mother. Their
funeral traditions include the construction of little funeral huts in which the
tomb is placed, as well as offerings and some possessions of the deceased.
Around the funeral hut is a fence of wooden pillars, which are topped by crude
wooden carvings of spiritual guardians or sexually explicit figures and those of pregnant women (fig.).
The latter are fertility symbols intended to accompany the departed in the
afterlife and suggest that life does not end after death. The burial ceremony is
extremely expensive and usually entails the sacrifice of animals, such as
water buffalos. After a number of years, the tomb is abandoned after conducting
a final ceremony, which marks the point where the spirit of the dead is
released, and the widow or widower is allowed to remarry. The Gia Rai are also known as Jarai.
One of the 54
ethnic minority groups in
Vietnam officially recognized by the Vietnamese
government. There are just under 50,000 Giay living in Vietnam, especially in
the area of Lao Cai. The women traditionally wear a checkered headscarf, a pair
of −usually black− trousers, and a blue, pink, white or green shirt, which is
either pale or dark in hue, and which has a wide band in one colour at the
cuffs, as well as around the neckline, from where it stretches down to a clasp under the
right armpit. Pronounced Zay.
Name of a genus of apes, with long arms and
a black non-hairy face. There are several species, including the Crowned or
the White-cheeked Gibbon, of which there are two varieties, i.e. the
Southern White-cheeked Gibbon
Northern White-cheeked Gibbon
of which males and females exhibit sexual dichromatism, i.e. have
different fur colourations and marking patterns; the Black-handed Gibbon, of
which males have the white cheeks of the White-cheeked Gibbon (fig.)
and the white brows of the
and the White-handed Gibbon (fig.),
which has either a light fur and a dark face (fig.)
or a dark brown fur with a white rim around its face, though both with white fur
on their hands. Some gibbon species, such as the Pileated Gibbon and the Hoolock
Gibbon, are sexually dichromatic, i.e. sexually dimorphic in colour, though
White-handed Gibbons, that come in different colours, are not. Gibbons occur in
all of Southeast Asia and spend most of their life in treetops (fig.),
as they are rather clumsy on the ground (fig.).
They live in small family groups consisting of a male and female with up to four
young. They feed on fruits and insects alike and might occasionally even eat
squirrels and small birds which they, through their speed, are said to pick from
the air. They have a lifespan of about 25 years. In Thai they are called
a word which can also be used derogatory for women, since the
White-handed Gibbon call sounds like ‘phua’,
the Thai word for husband, thus indicating a gibbon sounds like a woman who is
calling for her husband. This distinctive call can be heard from up to two
kilometer away. Their scientific name is
Hylobates. See also
1. Term used for
the Thai form of art called
laai rod nahm, literally a
‘design washed with water’. Gilded designs are obtained by outlining them first onto a polished
(fig.). Then the area that will be the background is covered with a
‘pasty resist’. The whole surface is next coated with a resin, making the applied
gold leaf stick on the outlined pattern. Then the surface is gently
‘washed with water’ removing the resist and leaving the gold leaf fixed to the design. Gilded lacquer is often used in temple architecture and as decoration on furniture, especially on
scripture cabinets (fig.) that hold religious manuscripts.
2. Term for
lacquerware products that have been gilded, e.g. covered thinly with gold or
gold leaf, or
tinged with a golden colour, such as gold paint. Often, those gilded products
are made from wood and adorned with small pieces of —sometimes coloured— glass, similar to
Common name of a tropical plant of the genus Zingiber,
of which there are more than 180 known species, of
which the rootstock of many of those
serves as a spice, a side dish or a medicine. Ginger and
galangal plants have been introduced and used in
Thailand for a long time, as spices and herbs, while some species are
internationally recognized for their health benefits. As a result, gingers have
become economically valuable and there are ongoing studies to see if there can
be other possible benefits, such as aromatic oils for therapeutic purpose.
The inflorescence of most species of ginger is typically set atop a spike with
closely overlapping bracts and from which the botanical name Zingiber is
derived, which comes from a Sanskrit word that means
In Thai, ginger is called
while galangal plants are referred to as
in English also known as Thai ginger. See also
red ginger and
See also POSTAGE STAMPS.
reuan kanompang khing.
for a deciduous tree with the scientific designation Ginkgo biloba. It is native
to China and
be the same
as a species
tree is also
a source of
that lived a
with it gets
nuts, sit in
and are used
in soups, as
well as in
the tree is
known as yin
The fleshy root of a climber-like plant with therapeutic effects and the
botanic name panax of which several species exist, including Panax ginseng and
Panax pseudoginseng. The word ginseng derives from the Chinese term renshen,
literally ‘man root’ (fig.) and its scientific name Panax means ‘all-heal’ in Greek. In Thai
Giraffe Stag Beetle
Name for a species of stag
beetle in the Lucanidae family, with the scientific names Cladognathus giraffa and Prosopocoilus
jing lehn duang.
baan mairoo rohy.
Glory of Thailand
Common name of a kind of sea snail. It is
one of three known subspecies of the Conus crocatus, i.e. a cone snail in the
family Conidae, with the scientific name Conus crocatus thailandis, or simply
Conus thailandis. It is found in sand and shell gravels at the bottom of the
sea, at depths of between 30 to 40 meters, and occurs off the southern coast of
peninsular Thailand, in the Andaman Sea. This marine gastropod mollusc is
predatory and venomous, and is known to have stung humans. It has a cone-shaped
shell, of which the surface is brown
with diffuse white markings. In Thai, is it called
taopoon thai (หอยเต้าปูนไทย) and it
appears on a Thai postage stamp issued in 1989, as part of a set of four stamps
on Thai molluscs (fig.).
for a bird in the ibis family, with the scientific name Plegadis falcinellus. It
is the most widespread species of ibis, its distribution stretching over much of the
world's warmer regions. Adults are 55 to 65 centimeters tall and outside the breeding season,
they are mostly uniformly dark brown with a slight purplish tinge, and glossy
green scapulars and coverts, a white-streaked head and neck, a brownish bill,
dark facial skin bordered above and below with grey, and brownish legs. In the breeding season,
adults are mostly deep purplish-chestnut, with a glossy green forecrown and no
white streaks on the head and neck, but with bolder white facial lines, while
the bill is more flesh-coloured.
Thai for the fruit of the
banana plant (fig.), of the genus
Musa and of which several species exist, such as
gluay hom chan,
gluay naam wah,
gluay hak muk,
gluay tani, and
gluay kai. Exceptionally banana plants are found producing a bunch with more than a thousand bananas to a single raceme, in Thailand known as
gluey roy wie. Also spelled kluay.
gluay braek taek (กล้วยเบรคแตก)
banana’. A kind of banana chips, made
gluay naam wah bananas,
that are peeled, sliced and
fried for about 20 minutes in vegetable oil, until they are golden-brown. They
are then cooled off and dried.
gluay chaab (กล้วยฉาบ)
banana’. A snack that can be made from a variety of bananas,
etc. The bananas are peeled, sliced lengthwise and fried in oil until crispy (fig.).
After this, the oil and bananas are removed from the
wok or frying
pan, and sugar, salt and water is added, and cooked until the sugar
becomes liquid. Then it is left to simmer a bit until the sugar has become
sticky and fibrous, after which the earlier fried bananas are added. When done
and cooled off, the bananas may be coated with an extra layer of ordinary sugar.
This process can also be done with
taro, potatoes or sweet potatoes.
gluay cheuam (กล้วยเชื่อม)
Thai. A snack
of whole bananas boiled in syrup (cheuam).
gluay glaay (กล้วยกล้าย)
Thai name for the
or wild banana, which in Thailand is found only
on the southern peninsula, and typically used to make banana chips. This large
species of banana is often
nicknamed with titles such as
gluay nga chang, i.e. ‘elephant tusk
banana’; gluay yak (กล้วยยักษ์), i.e. ‘giant
banana’; gluay mon thong (กล้วยหมอนทอง), i.e. ‘golden pillow
banana’; and gluay kohk (กล้วยโกก), i.e. ‘yoke
pisang tanduk, which
(fig.). See also
gluay hak muk (กล้วยหักมุก)
Thai. ‘Angular pearl banana’. A kind of tapered
banana that has an angular shape (hak) which far end narrows into a short nozzle.
This cultivar is commonly known as Silver Bluggoe, and has the scientific
botanical name Musa acuminata x balbisiana. See also
gluay hin (กล้วยหิน)
pearl banana’. A kind of banana, similar to
gluay naam wah.
When boiled or glazed it will have a somewhat nutty taste. It is a specialty
gluay hom (กล้วยหอม)
Thai. ‘Fragrant banana’. Long and sweet, domesticated species of banana
of the Cavendish subgroup and the kind best known in the West, as it is the most suitable for human consumption.
When it is ripe and yellow, it may also be referred to as gluay hom thong (กล้วยหอมทอง
‘golden fragrant banana’.
gluay hom chan (กล้วยหอมจันทน์)
Thai. ‘Fragrant sandalwood banana’. Name for a species of banana with an angular shape. When ripe the fruit is greenish yellow. See also
gluay khai (กล้วยไข่)
Thai. ‘Egg banana’. Name for a kind of banana from the province of
Kamphaeng Phet which is small egg shaped (khai).
This type is used to make
gluay khao mao thod (fig.),
a snack of kind of deep-fried banana rolled in a mixture of
flesh. See also
gluay khao mao thod (กล้วยข้าวเม่าทอด)
Name for a kind of snack that consists of
of the type
gluay khai (fig.),
wrapped or rolled in a mixture of
and fried in oil that has been scented with
leaves. Due to the khao mao
wrapping, the outer
casing may be greenish in colour.
Other ingredients to make the mix for the wrapping include coconut sugar, rice
flour, an egg, some salt and water.
gluay mai (กล้วยไม้)
Thai name for
gluay naam (กล้วยน้ำ)
Thai. ‘Water banana’. Name for a species of banana that resembles the
gluay hom chan but which fruit is longer and its peel thicker. See also
gluay naam wah (กล้วยน้ำว้า)
Thai. A wild species of short bananas growing from a plant with a raceme that bears around twelve bunches, with combs of around ten bananas. Inside there are small inedible
This kind is used to make banana chips. In the Indian festival of
Navaratri this kind of banana is offered a symbol of fertility. See also
gluay nga chang (กล้วยงาช้าง)
Thai. ‘Elephant tusk banana’. Nickname for the
plantain banana, which is officially
known in Thai as
and in Malay-Indonesian
pisang tanduk, which
‘horn banana’ (fig.).
It Thai, it also called gluay yak (กล้วยยักษ์), i.e. ‘giant
banana’; gluay mon thong (กล้วยหมอนทอง), i.e. ‘golden pillow
banana’; and gluay kohk (กล้วยโกก), i.e. ‘yoke banana’.
Thai. ‘Elephant trunk banana’. Nickname for the
gluay roy wie, a
banana plant which raceme consists of a very large bunch of bananas, resembling an elephant's trunk.
gluay nom nang yak (กล้วยนมนางยักษ์)
Thai. ‘Giantess' breast
Name for a kind of large and thick, wild banana, that is reminiscent
(nom) of a female
a mythological character with large sagging breasts, who regularly appears in
Thai folk stories (fig.).
gluay nom sawan (กล้วยนมสวรรค์)
Thai. ‘Heavenly breast
Name for a kind of ornamental
and its fruits, in name reminiscent of
gluay nom nang yak, i.e. the
‘giantess' breast banana’, which
is named after either
breast of a female
giantess or yak
a mythological character with large sagging breasts (fig.).
gluay ob (กล้วยอบ)
banana’, ‘dried banana’ or ‘grilled banana’. A popular snack,
usually sold on markets and from roadside shops. There
exist several varieties, depending on the kind of banana used and the method of
gluay ob lep meua
gluay ob lep meua nang (กล้วยอบเล็บมือนาง)
lady fingernail banana’. A kind of snack made of a small type of whole bananas (fig.),
usually not larger than eight to ten centimeters and which in English
are usually called dried ladyfinger
bananas. They are dried and coated with natural honey (fig.). See also
gluay ob naam pheung (กล้วยอบน้ำผึ้ง)
Thai. ‘Baked/dried honey banana’. A kind of sweet snack made of whole, short, thick bananas
which are dried and coated with honey.
gluay roy wie (กล้วยร้อยหวี)
Thai. ‘Banana plant with a hundred combs’. Banana plant (fig.) on which, one single raceme bears a giant bunch of more than a thousand bananas, with each comb having around a dozen fruits. Usually these plants need support otherwise they will collapse under their own weight (fig.). Also known by the nickname
chang, elephant trunk banana plant. See also
gluay tak (กล้วยตาก)
banana’. A snack of oven dried bananas. They are made from dried
bananas mixed with natural honey,
without any preservation, sugar or
artificial colors added.
gluay tani (กล้วยตานี)
banana’. A species of wild,
edible banana that is
sometimes listed as a type of small
plantain, with many large, inedible seeds. It
is thick and short, and its peel rather thick and often with strong accentuated
corners, making it look almost square. It may be
bluish-green or yellowish brown, and sometimes even of a reddish color. Its name is derived from the old name for the town of
Pattani in the south of Thailand, which was formerly
called Thani. The plant's strong leaves are used as wrapper and their strength makes them more suitable than other banana leaves to make a
Vietnam, this species is known as chuoi hot (chuối hột), literally
‘seeds banana’ (fig.).
Its botanical name is Musa balbisiana and along with Musa acuminata (gluay hom
thong - กล้วยหอมทอง
- fig.), it is an
ancestor of modern cultivated bananas. It is native to northern Southeast Asia and
southern China, as well as to
eastern South Asia. See also
gluay thep phanom (กล้วยเทพพนม)
Thai name for a species of rare yet
edible banana. These bananas stick together in their comb, each attached to its
neighbour and the top row of the comb attached to the bottom row, thus forming
one large lump. These bananas therefore have no skin in between them; they only
have skin on the outside while in between the "individual" bananas their is no
skin at all, at best only some fibers. The name derives from the fact that these
combs of banana are reminiscent of a
a gesture in which people
raise both hands, palm to palm,
as a way of respect and in daily life better known as a
Due to this, gluay thep phanom are a popular and symbolic item as on offering
Their taste is described as sweet and similar to that of
gluay hak muk
bananas. The flesh is
somewhat soft and sticky.
gluay thod (กล้วยทอด)
Ancient Chinese board game played
with two players, in which the aim is to surround more territory than the
opponent. This abstract strategy game is played with black and white stones on a
board with a standard grid of 19×19 lines, though boards with grids of less
lines do exist. It at least dates back to the Zhou Dynasty (ca. BC
1046 - BC 771), when it was considered one of the four essential arts of the
cultured, yet according to legend the
semi-mythological Wu Di
Emperor Tang Yao, who purportedly ruled for 100 years (BC 2358 -
2258), designed it
for his son to teach him discipline, concentration, and balance. Over 4,000
years later, this ancient board game played a role in the development of
Artificial Intelligence with superhuman skills in thre creation of AlphaGo Zero,
a computerized version of Go which uses a deep neural network inspired by the
structure of the brain to learn abstract concepts from the boards by engaging in
reinforcement learning, playing against itself until it could anticipate its own
moves and how those moves would affect the game's outcome, hence without
human-programmed edge cases to help recognize unusual board positions. Despite its relatively simple rules, Go is very complex, as the number
of possible and allowed board positios are calculated to be vastly greater than
the number of atoms in the universe. The objective of the game is for players to
use the stones to form territories by occupying the vacant areas on the board,
whilst opponents will try to capture each other's stones. The name Go is an
abbreviation of the Japanese name Igo, which in turn derives from the Chinese
Weiqi, which literally means ‘encircling game’. Also spelled Goe.
goa bpray-ee (គោព្រៃ)
Khmer. ‘Wild ox’. Designation for a species of wild ox found in the forests
It has the scientific name Bos sauveli and is commonly known as
Kouprey, a name that
derives from the
A niche in a
Thai gold and
Chinese gold ingot.
Name for a butterfly with the scientific name Troides
occasionally listed as Papilio aeacus, which on a Thai postage stamp issued
in 1968 is spelled Papilio aecus
(fig.). It is mainly velvety black, with some red spotting; pale streaks
on the forewings, that are broader and more prominent with females; and
mainly yellow hindwings, with a black rim. It has a yellow body and yellow hindwings, though females have a
somewhat darker body and more black spotting on the hindwings (fig.).
It is very similar to the
and is somewhat reminiscent of
Great Mormon (fig.),
Common Rose (fig.)
Common Mormon (fig.).
Jin Tong and
Golden Boy and Jade Girl.
Golden Boy and Jade Girl
Jin Tong and
appear together as
Chinese mascots, especially on January 15th of each year. On
that day, legend has it,
descended from heaven to help the humans to clear the ice and snow in order to
prepare for a new harvest. This, however, angered the
Jade Emperor, as he had intended the snow to be
his gift for the
people, in order to bring them happiness. Enraged, the Jade Emperor prepared his
celestial army to descend to earth and destroy it by fire. When
found out about the emperor's plan, she also descended from heaven to inform
Golden Boy and the humans. Hence, they came up with a plan of their own to
deceive the celestial army by tricking it into thinking that the world was
already ablaze, by setting off firecrackers and light up lanterns. When the
celestial army descended to earth and observed all the light and noise, it
assumed the world was already ablaze and left again, without harming it. Thus,
Golden Boy and Jade Girl saved the world from destruction, an event that is
since commemorated annually on January 15th, by illumining lanterns and setting
off firecrackers (fig.), whilst homes and businesses are decorated with auspicious
posters displaying Golden Boy and Jade Girl.
Name of a 3.5 meter high
and 5.5 ton weighing
which is made of solid gold (fig.).
During the siege of
Ayutthaya this image was covered with plaster to hide it from the Burmese
invaders. The statue cast in
Sukhothai style was moved from Ayutthaya to
Bangkok after the city was destroyed by the Burmese in 1767. Over time this plaster
casing was assumed to be the original. Only recently was the original
rediscovered when a crane moving the statue within the temple complex dropped
it breaking open the plaster
revealing the solid gold. The Golden Buddha, officially named
Phutta Maha Suwan Patimakon, was until 2009 housed in
temple's compound, but was at the end of that year moved to a newly
constructed high-rise building (fig.).
Name of a life-sized
which is dressed in royal attire and is in the
pahng hahm samut pose,
i.e. standing while
with both hands raised
is made of 90 kilograms of genuine gold, and adorned with 9,584 diamonds, the
largest of which weighs 25 carats. The Buddha image was commissioned by King
and created in his palace workshops between
1906 and 1907. Today, it is located in the main
i.e. the royal ‘Temple of the
which is also known as the Silver Pagoda, in Phnom Penh.
See also MAP.
Common name for a species of bird in the starling family
Sturnidae and with the scientific designation Ampeliceps coronatus. It is found
in India, as well as throughout mainland Southeast Asia, including in Thailand,
where it is known as
nok ihyang hua sih thong, i.e. ‘Golden-headed Myna’.
This myna is 22 to 24 centimeters tall and mainly black. Males have a yellow
head, a yellow bill, and a small yellow patch on the wing coverts, whereas the
yellow on the head of females is more patchy and restricted to the crown and
chin. Both sexes have a whitish naked eye-patch and pinkish-orange legs and
feet. Like many other starlings and myna species, the Golden-crested Myna also has
a larger whitish patch on the underwings.
Name for a large shrub
or small tree to 6 meters high, with the botanical names
Duranta repens and Duranta erecta, and belonging to the family Verbenaceae.
It is recognized by lavender flowers, that grow in tight clusters and bloom
almost year round, and small yellowish-orange berries that grow from drooping
stalks, and which are toxic to humans, dogs and cats, but not to birds. Also
commonly known as Pigeon Berry and Sky Flower, and in Thai called thian yod (เทียนหยด),
which means ‘candle drop(s)’, and refers to the religious
candles used in
which are of the same colour (fig.).
Common name of a species of bird with the scientific
designation Chloropsis aurifrons (fig.), which is found in South and Southeast Asia, from
India and Sri Lanka, over
and Indonesia, including also Singapore and
Brunei. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist lowland
forests. Its plumage is of a
chartreuse-lime colour, with a golden-orange forecrown (fig.), a black breast with
a yellowish lower border, a black face, and a large blue throat patch,
under a black, down-curved beak (fig.). Like
all leafbirds it imitates the songs of other bird species. In 1980, this
bird was depicted on the first stamp of a set of four Thai postage
stamps featuring Thai birds (fig.).
In Thai it is
nok khiao kahn tong nah phaak sih thong.
Lesser Green Leafbird
Greater Green Leafbird (fig.).
Another name for the
Cat Ba Langur.
Name for a crushed foot as obtained by foot-binding, a custom practiced in
between the 10th and early 20th century, in which the feet of young girls were bound with
ribbons from an early age onward, usually around the age of 5, before the arch
of the foot was fully developed, in order to create small yet deformed feet, which in
the culture of that period was seen as a sign of beauty and attractiveness, that
gave women a high status. It was first practiced among the wealthy and the
elite, and represented their
exemption from manual labour. In this
painful procedure of the past, the toes were bent down and bound with ribbons in a
eight-shape form to fit in a customized slipper. A perfectly bound foot would
develop into an arch and was no more than 3 inches, i.e. less than 8
centimeters; if it was bigger, it was usually referred to as a silver
term golden lotus, purportedly derives from a story in the Ten Kingdoms Period,
in which Southern Tang emperor Li Yu (AD
961-975) instructed one of his slave girls to bind
her feet in silk ribbons and dance on a platform scattered with golden lotus
flowers. The demise of the awkward practice was initiated by western expat women
around the end of the 19th century and advocated by Christian missionaries.
flower that grows from the navel of
(fig.) during his cosmic sleep and from which
emerges. Also a metaphor in
Buddhism and often represented in art and Thai temples.
3. Name for a
small kind of sunflower that annually blooms
in the month of November, during the
Bua Thong Flower Blooming
Season, throughout the province of
Mae Hong Son
Common name for a primate, with the scientific designations
Rhinopithecus roxellanae and Pygathrix roxellanae, and which is also commonly
known as Sub-nosed Monkey. It has a golden head with a dark crown, whitish ear
tips and a greyish-blue face. Its body is greyish-buff above and white with
golden-buff below, whilst its tail is grey with a white tip (fig.). This monkey is
native to southern
China, where it is distributed in the
northwestern part of Sichuan, the southwestern part of Shaanxi, ad the
northwestern part of Hupei. The Golden Monkey is arboreal and inhabits mixed
forests up to 3,400 meters above sea level.
It has a heavy fur to withstand subzero
winters and the flat muzzle is believed to have evolved to prevent frostbite in
extreme cold. It is alert and vigilant, and adapt
at climbing and jumping. It forms into groups of several dozen to several
hundred animals. Golden Monkeys feed on leaves, tender branches, buds, fruits,
flowers, seeds, tree bark, moss, and also on small birds and bird eggs.
related to the
Yunnan Sub-nosed Monkey (fig.).
Chinese, the Golden Monkey is known as Jin Si Hou.
Golden Orb-web Spider
A genus of giant, hand-sized spiders, with the scientific
name Nephila maculata. The common name Golden Orb-web Spider refers to the
colour of the spider's silk, rather than to the colour of the spider itself. It
is renowned for the impressive webs it builds, which occasionally have zigzag
patterns, called stabilimenta, weaved into them. Though the function of these
web decorations is unsure, they are believed to help attract prey, possibly by
reflecting ultraviolet light. Due to the zigzag patterns, these spiders are
sometimes referred to as writing spiders, though they are also commonly known as
Giant Long-jawed Orb-weaver, Giant Wood Spider and Golden Silk orb-weaver, and
in Thai as
maengmoom yai thong
laai khanaan. It is widely distributed nationwide and
is similar to the less common
Batik Golden Web
There is also a bright-green version, commonly known as the
Green Orb Spider, which is actually a
species in its own right, with the scientific name
Peucetia viridana (fig.).
As many other spiders, the
Golden Orb-web Spider
produces a silk dragline as it walks, which operates as a safety line, catching
the spider if it would fall. This silk dragline possess remarkable mechanical
properties in terms of strength, resilience and flexibility, with a tensile
strength stronger than steel yet with a elasticity than enables it to stretch to
140 percent of its original position before breaking. These properties have been
the subject of much research and its use as a material in lightweight and
high-strength applications are finding their way in the production of ballistic
resistant fabric. However, since spiders are cannibalistic, they cannot be
raised in concentrated colonies. Hence, to produce this silk in ample and
commercially viable quantities, the spider's DNA is injected into goats that
have been genetically modified to secrete silk proteins in their milk, which is
then purified, retrieved from the milk and spun into a fiber.
Story about the beloved pet of the Hindu god
Indra, that revealed who of the Hindu
gods is ultimately in charge of life and death. One day, while Indra was sitting
on his throne with his golden parrot,
Yama, the god of
death, came to fetch it. When asked why he took the parrot's life, Yama replied
that he only executed the orders of
the god of time, as it is time that eventually leads to death. Thus, Indra
probed Kala, who in turn said that he only followed the order of
Citragupta. Hence, the latter was also
questioned, but he retorted that he only keeps the records and referred Indra to
Ishvara, whose very name means ‘lord’, ‘controller’ or ‘god’,
and which is another name for
Shiva, the destroyer of things.
Common name of a colourful bird in the
family Phasianidae, with the binomial name
Chrysolophus pictus, of which there are several varieties (fig.).
Adult males are generally about 90-105 centimeters in length, with the
long, buff tail with black markings, accounting for most of it. They have either
a copper-red or a yellow-golden crest (fig.), and a golden-orange belly and breast, the
latter often with some yellow. The upper back is green and the rest of the back and
rump are golden-yellow in colour, with blue wings and a black-barred, white
ruff-like cape, which in some individuals may be of a golden colour (fig.). It has yellow eyes, with a black pupil, surrounded by a dark yellowish
orbital skin and with small, yellow wattles underneath. Although smaller and with a somewhat different colouring, it is to
some extent reminiscent of the male
Lady Amherst's Pheasant (fig.).
Adult females (fig.) are much duller, with a mottled brown plumage, also similar to
that of the female Lady Amherst's Pheasant (fig.),
but with yellow legs and feet, rather than bluish-grey, and a plain
off-white vent. The hen's breast and sides are barred buff
and blackish brown. Her throat and face are
buff. Both males and females have yellow legs and yellow bills. Originally
from China, it is also known as Chinese Pheasant. It has been introduced in many
countries, including Thailand, where it is often found in zoos and aviaries, or
as a garden pet. In Thai it is known as
Golden Shower Tree
Common name for the Cassia fistula,
known in Thai as
as well as for the Cassia spectabilis, known in Thai as
It seems the dual use may have originated in the similarity between the two
species which both have resembling yellow inflorescences, though those of Cassia
fistula are drooping (fig.),
whereas those of Cassia spectabilis are growing upright (fig.).
Hence, the name Goden Shower seems more befitting for the Cassia fistula with
its hanging inflorescences, and the dual usage may have come about by mistake
due to their resemblance.
Golden Shrimp Plant
leuang kiri boon.
Golden Silk Orb-weaver
Golden Orb-web Spider.
Golden-spotted Tiger Beetle
Another name for the
Blue-spotted Tiger Beetle.
Wat Phra Prang Muni in
Wat Pahk Nahm Choloh
Wat Pluak Ket in
4. Temple of the
Amritsar in the Indian Punjab name for the
amrit, the sacred ‘water of immortality’ surrounding the temple. Its foundation
was laid during the period of the fifth
Arjan Dev (1581-1606) and it is of the utmost importance to the Sikh, since it
Adi-Granth, the Sikh holy book with more than five hundred hymns. Also called
Golden Tree Snake
Name for a
snake. It has a 100-130
centimeter long, pale green
or greenish yellow body, with black or black-edged crossbars and spots at intervals.
Its belly scales are pale green with black spots next to each lateral notch (fig.). Its
flattened head is black with yellow crossbars and has a constricted neck, a
blunt nose and large eyes with round pupils. Its venom is not very poisonous and
it is considered harmless. It is also known as the Golden Flying Snake or Ornate
Gliding Snake, since it is capable of flight by
gliding through the air. These snakes are active
during the day and feed on rodents, geckos and other
lizards. They move very fast and are often found climbing in trees (fig.). In Thai it is called
ngu khiaw phra in,
green snake’ or
ngu khiaw dok mahk,
flower snake’, perhaps because its
greenish yellow colour is reminiscent of
that of the fruit of the betel nut
It is found throughout Thailand.
The place on
Thai soil in Sop
Ruak (สบรวก) near
Chiang Saen that has
Laos. The name also refers to the wider area of this region infamous for the cultivation of
opium. Sop Ruak lies on the banks of the
Mae Khong river and is home to Wat Phrathat Doi Khao, a hilltop temple featuring
naga-stairs (fig.). The hill offers a bird's-eye view of the valley and on the left side of the main temple building are the remains of the ancient
moss-covered Buddha image of Luang Pho Singh Neung (map
fig.). On the left side of the temple's naga-stairs is Ban
(House of Opium), a museum that displays artifacts relating to the region's history with opium production and the trade in this drug. In the past the region was known for regular power struggles for control of the region's poppy fields, fought between many contenders, including the
Shan United Army from
Burma. In 1967 a battle took place here between fighters of the later disposed opium lord
Khun Sa and troops of the Kuomintang, who were allowed by the Thai government to control the illicit drug trade. In 2005 a monument (fig.) and large Buddha image (fig.) were erected on the banks of the Mae Khong
River (map) to commemorate the sixth life cycle of HRH Queen
In Thai the Golden Triangle is called
Saam Liam Thong Kham.
WATCH VIDEO (1) and
ban buri leuang.
Golden Wonder Tree
Name for a small,
reddish-golden Chinese carp (fig.), which in
China is considered a wealth symbol. In Chinese, fish are called yú (鱼),
a word with the same sound as yú (逾)
meaning ‘to exceed’ and yú (余),
meaning ‘surplus’, and –although with a different tone– it sounds also somewhat similar to
which means ‘jade’. Due to this, fish frequently appear in Chinese
their symbols are typical Chinese good luck charms, especially goldfish, as
those are called jīnyú (金鱼) which sounds
the same as jīnyú (金逾) or jīnyú (金余)
and can be translated as ‘surplus of money’ or ‘gold in excess’.
As such, Chinese business people often
place a bowl of goldfish, or a good luck charm in the form of a
in their offices or homes. A
boy depicted in Chinese art holding a
and a goldfish (fig.), expresses the hope that
one would prosper year after year, as goldfish are symbol for ‘surplus of
money’ or ‘gold in excess’, and the lotus
for sequence, because the character lián (連) which means ‘successively’
is a homonym for the character lián (莲), meaning ‘lotus’.
This scene should however not be confused with depictions of the boy
holding a carp, as described in the tale of
the daughter of the Dragon King of the East Sea. See also
and compare with
Name for 24 karat gold, usually with a purity of 99.9%, that is flattened into ultra thin leaves
through hammering, traditionally done
called gold beaters.
Kannada. Name for a
saint, the second of the one hundred sons of
Adinatha, the first
Tirthankara, whom the
sect regards as a prophet. He is represented completely nude in a standing pose,
with his legs and arms entwined by creepers, symbolizing his immobility and deep
concentration. In addition, he is sometimes flanked by two
termite mounds. When his elder brother
Bharat was to become monarch, he asked his younger brother to
accept him as his king and protector. Gomateshwara refused and he was challenged to fight his
brother in battle. Although Gomateshwara was much
stronger, he let his brother win rather than to harm him, thus putting aside his
pride. He then took up the ascetic life and became a saint.
He is also known by the names Gommata and Bahubali, the latter meaning
‘strong-armed’. Sometimes transcribed Gommateshvara.
kong and for
plate gong, see
Either a person or a statue thereof holding a
though commonly found in pair, i.e. two individuals carrying a
mai kaan haab-like
rod or shaft, to which in the centre a gong is attached (fig.).
Statues of gong bearers are usually carved from wood and
sometimes adorned with
gilded lacquer (fig.), and each figure
has one hand held upright, in which the pole rests.
They are often found as a decorative item in hotel lobbies, or at temples. In
Burmese style, the gong bearers may carry a
gong known as
rather than a traditional gong
gong de (功德)
Chinese. ‘Merit heart’. Term for a kind of
tamboon (merit making) ritual in which next of kin offer paper
paraphernalia to their dead. It is commonly practiced at
Thai-Chinese funerals. The paper paraphernalia may include paper
mansions, paper cars, paper mobile phones, paper gold bars (fig.),
Chinese gold ingots
made from paper
and other materialistic
goods, as well as fake paper money known as hell money (ming bi) and
joss or gold paper (jin
zhi). All these are burned
in specially built ovens (fig.)
the last night before the coffin is cremated or buried, for the use
of the departed in the afterlife. The ritual may also be observed on
the 7th or 21st day after the death of a person, during
Qing Ming, Chinese All Souls Day
Ghost Month, the seventh Chinese
similar fashion in
thuyen giay, i.e. ‘paper boats’,
are set adrift on the water as an offer to the deceased (fig.).
Besides for use in the afterlife, the ritual of gong de is also intended to make it easier for
mourners to come to terms with their grieve.
joss paper the
person offering it will first make a vow called
in which the hands
are brought together
above the head, making a
In Thai, the term is
transliterated as kong teik. See also
ngeun pahk phi.
Hindi name for the
cluster fig tree.
Hindu-Buddhist mythology, the goose is the mount of several deities, including
Brahma and his
as well as
Chandra, yet it is often confused
for the swan, whereas in
the goose is usually associated with wealth, akin to the
THEMATIC STREET LIGHT.
Sanskrit. The wife of prince
Sanskrit. Milkmaids, or female cowherds, who played with
Krishna in his childhood. When they gathered on the banks of the river
Yamuna to dance and flirt, each of them thought she was alone with Krishna, but in fact he multiplied himself and danced with them all
Sanskrit. An ornamental crowned gateway or entrance pavilion to a religious sanctuary, sometimes surmounted by a tower.
The gopura of Hindu temples in South Indian style generally have an elaborately
decorated, distinctive gateway-tower (fig.).
Name of a very
rich but stingy man, who lived during the time of the
Buddha and loved eating
pancakes. To avoid having to share them with anyone he would ask his wife to
make the sweets in a hidden place, so he could eat all by himself. When the
Buddha found out about the man's behaviour he sent
Mogallana to visit Gosiya
bintabaat alms round and told him to beg for kanom beuang as
an alms offering. Gosiya, although unwillingly, couldn't
decently refuse the monks request thus came up with the idea to offer only a
very small pancake. However, each time his wife put the dough onto the
baking plate it swell until it had the size of the hot plate itself. After
several attempts to make just a small kanom beuang, he gave up his efforts and
eventually became a generous man.
‘Hook’, ‘barb’ or ‘sickle’, but also ‘to stroke with’. Name of a Chinese martial
weapon which in English is usually referred to as a hook sword or tiger-head. It
consists of a large crowbar-like rod with a sharp hook at the tip and a
sickle-shaped knife attached near the grip at the bottom, which is also pointed
Its shape is somewhat reminiscent of that of the
qian kun ri yue dao (fig.)
but gou are typically used as a pair.
Sanskrit. ‘Increaser of cattle’. The mountain lifted by the Hindu god
Krishna to shelter the herdsmen and their cattle from the storm caused by
Indra, after they had refused to make offerings to him and instead became followers of Krishna.
Name of a 929,800 square meter site along Chaeng Wattahana
Road in Bangkok's Laksi district, that is home to several
Thai government buildings and concentrates a
number of government agencies and departments.
Sanskrit. ‘Cowherd’, one of the epithets of
used when he is
described or portrayed as a youthful cowherd. It literally means ‘finder of
ko or ‘cow’
+ vinda or ‘to find’) and is used besides Gopala, which means ‘protector
of cows’ (ko or ‘cow’
+ pala or ‘protector’, as in
lokapala). In art, Govinda and Gopala are both depicted as Krishna
accompanied by one or more cows, and usually whilst he is
bamboo flute of
which he is a master.
roi khut khiht khiyan.
Thai. ‘Water chestnut’, of the genus
(fig.). Also krajab.
name for a species of moth, found from the Mediterranean to the Oriental and
Australasian tropics. It is grey-brown and its forewings are distinctly marked
by a white band, flanked by two broader black ones, of which the outer one is
also edged narrowly with white. It has no common name accredited, but is also
known by other scientific designations, including Grammodes orientalis,
Grammodes bifulvata, Noctua geometrica and Phalaena ammonia. In Thailand, adults
have been recorded piercing fruit, like the
A circa 1,800
kilometer long canal in eastern
that connects Beijing with Hangzhou, and which at the time was the longest
inland waterway in the world. The construction of this gigantic project was
commissioned by the Emperor Wei of the Sui Dynasty, in order to facilitate
interregional trade and as an aquatic highway to transport troops and supplies
between the northern and the southern regions. However, Emperor Wei died in 604
AD and it was his son and successor Emperor Yang Di, who completed the canal
around 605 AD, about six years after the project was launched, and using a
forced manpower of over five million people, of whom many died during the
construction, either of starvation or fatigue, if not beaten to dead by their
overseers. The Grand Canal was completed by means of linking a series of
existing artificial waterways, such as the Han Gou canal (which construction
dates to 486 BC and already connected the Yangtze River to the Huai River via
existing waterways and lakes) and the –even older– Hong Gou canal, with other
natural rivers and lakes, taking advantage of the natural geography wherever
possible, as well as by digging additional parts for the new and unifying
channel. To make a barrier between the manmade canals and the natural waterways,
a total of 24 locks were used. Once finished, the Grand Canal was a generator of
wealth and a central artery, that integrated the North with the South and
strengthened the foundations of a unified empire. However, after completion, the
emperor made a victory tour over the Grand Canal with his imperial barges,
demanding luxury foods and exquisite tribute from the villages along the canal,
yet dumped much of it overboard due to excess and sheer debauchery. This
arrogant behaviour, watched in despair by a destitute population from the shores
of the canal, who already cultivated a resentment for their cruel emperor over
the many lives that were lost during the construction of the canal, eventually
led to an uprising against the decadent regime and in 618 AD caused the downfall
of the Sui Dynasty. In Chinese, the Grand Canal is called Da Yun He (大运河),
which literally means ‘large river to
transport’ or ‘big river for moving’.
Grand Canyon of Thailand
Grand Palace Hall
Chakri Throne Hall.
sarai phuang a-ngun.
Grass of the Dew
Name of a perennial plant with the botanical
designation Cyanotis arachnoidea.
It has a succulent stem and lies parallel to the ground, from where it extends
its young buds into the air. It has thick green leaves and yields violet flowers
all year round, with purplish-blue petals and furry stamens that are topped by
yellow anthers. It can be found all over Thailand, in any wet soil that is mixed
Grass of the Dew was used to cure rheumatic
infections in Imperial China, whilst its roots are used medicinally to stimulate
blood circulation, as a muscle and joint relaxant, and for relieving rheumatoid
arthritis. The Grass of Dew is
depicted on a postage stamp issued in 2009 as part of a set of four stamps on
wild flowers found in Thailand (fig.).
It is known in Thai as Euang Hin (เอื้องหิน).
for a species of a large pheasant, with the binomial name Argusianus argus.
for a circa 23 centimeter tall bird in the family Megalaimidae, with the
scientific name Megalaima virens.
for a wading bird in the heron family Ardeidae, with the
scientific name Ardea sumatrana.
for a widespread member of the cormorant family of seabirds, with the scientific
name Phalacrocorax carbo. There are several subspecies, the one in Southeast
Asia being Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis, which measures 80 to 100 centimeters,
has a black head, neck and underparts, and brown wings and scapulars, with black
fringing. In addition, it has extensive yellow facial skin, that extends to just
over the eyes and to the upper side of the throat, as well as conspicuous white
on the head-sides and upper throat.
It has dark grey to black legs and webbed feet (fig.).
Juvenile birds (fig.)
have a whitish underside, often with a brownish wash and some brown spots,
whilst the white on the head-sides and upper throat, is less clearly demarcated
than in adults (fig.). The Great Cormorant feeds mainly on fish and
is able to dive to considerable depths to catch its prey. In
this bird is therefore used by local fishermen for fishing (fig.), who tie its throat
with a piece of rope, thus preventing the birds from swallowing the fish, which
they then retrieve from its mouth. The Great Cormorant is one of the few birds
that is able to move its eyes, which aides it in hunting. When a flock of
cormorants are flying together, they adopt a V-formation (fig.). It is also known as
Black Cormorant and Great Black Cormorant, and in Thai it is called
nok kah nahm yai,
literally ‘large water-crow’.
See also TRAVEL PICTURES (1),
WILDLIFE PICTURES (1),
The moment when prince
Siddhartha at the age of twenty-nine left his family
(fig.) and renounced his royal life to become an ascetic in order to find the cause of human suffering. In Thai known as
Nih Banpacha, literally:
‘depart to live as a monk’.
Greater One-horned Rhinoceros
Blue Moon Butterfly.
Common name of
a 85 to 102 centimeters tall wading bird, with a long, S-shaped neck, which is
sharply kinked when retracted. Non-breeding adults are white, with a long,
pointed, yellowish bill, and blackish legs and feet. In the breeding, season the
feet and legs are reddish, the bill black, and the bird has short breast-plumes
and long back-plumes. Juveniles are similar to non-breeding adults. It has the
scientific name Casmerodius albus and the subspecies found in Southeast Asia is
known as Casmerodius albus modestus. Its habitat consists of various wetlands,
as well as mangroves. In Thai, it is called nok yahng yai
or nok krayahng yai (นกกระยางใหญ่). See also
Little Egret and
Common name of
a large wading bird in the stork family and with the scientific name Leptoptilos
dubius. This bird is 145 to 150 centimeters tall and has a wingspan of 2.5
meters. It resembles the somewhat smaller
Lesser Adjutant (fig.).
Both sexes are very similar, with a large wedge-shaped bill, which is pale in colour with a
darker base. Except for sometimes a few thinly dotted downy feathers, the head
is pale and mostly bare, with a blackish face. The neck is also bare and
yellowish-red in colour, with a distinctive bare neck pouch and a greyish-white collar ruff
at the base, both which are only clearly visible when the neck is not
subtracted. The wings are blackish with light grey secondary coverts, whilst the underparts are white. In the breeding season, the neck and pouch become orange
and the upper thighs of the normally grey legs (fig.)
turn reddish. Large numbers once lived across Asia, breeding from India to
Borneo, but their numbers have deeply declined and current breeding colonies are
restricted to only a few populations, mainly in Assam and
bird, with the scientific name Centropus sinensis, that belongs to the family
Cuculidae. Adults are about 48 to 52 centimeters tall, overall glossy black, with chestnut brown wings, and ruby
red eyes (fig.). The bill and legs are blackish, and it typically has a long hind claw.
It has short, protruding, hairy feathers between the bill and chin, and between
the bill and the forehead. Juveniles are duller, with whitish spots on the crown, blackish bars on the back
and wings, and buff to brownish bars on the underside and tail (fig.). This species is also known as Crow Pheasant, and in Thai
as nok krapoot yai (นกกระปูดใหญ่). It is widespread and is a resident in South
and Southeast Asia, where occurs in a wide range of habitats, ranging from dense
forest to cultivation. They are weak fliers that clamber in vegetation or walk
on the ground (fig.) searching for food, which includes insects, eggs and nestlings of
other birds. There are several subspecies. The Greater Coucal is sometimes
called Bhardwaj or Bharadvaja Bird,
a name associated with
sometimes given to the
i.e. the leader of the
Eighteen Arahats (fig.),
as well as associated
Kanaka Bharadvaja (fig.). See also
See WILDLIFE PICTURES.
Common name of
a large woodpecker, with the scientific name Chrysocolaptes lucidus, and which occurs
widely in tropical and subtropical Asia, from India to the Philippines and
Indonesia. It has an adult body size of around 33 centimeters and an erect
crest, which is red in males and variable in females according to the
subspecies, from black with white spots to yellow or brown with lighter dots.
Adults have a golden-brown to copper back and wings, and a black tail, whilst the rump is
red and the underparts are either white with dark markings, or light brown. The head is usually whitish with a black
pattern. The straight pointed bill, typical of woodpeckers, is blackish and
almost as long as the head. In Thai, this bird is known as
nok hua khwaan sih niw lang thong. Also called
Greater Goldenback or Large Golden-backed Woodpecker. See also
Common Flameback (fig.).
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES.
Common name of
a species of flamingo, with the scientific designation Phoenicopterus roseus.
Greater Green Leafbird
Common name of a 20-22 centimeters tall bird with the scientific
designation Chloropsis sonnerati, which is found in Southeast Asia. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist lowland
forests. The male's plumage is of a chartreuse-lime colour with a black breast and face, and a
slim blue malar band, and a black beak. Males have a very thin yellowish lower
border around the black breast, which is not always clearly visible. Females
have no black throat nor face, but are overall green, with yellow throat, an eye
ring and a
small blue malar band. Both sexes are similar to those of the
Lesser Green Leafbird, though they have a
larger bill and are also somewhat larger in size. Like
all leafbirds, the Greater Green Leafbird imitates the songs of other bird species. In Thai it is
nok khiao kahn tong yai.
Great Evening Brown
for species of butterfly, with the scientific name Melanitis zitenius. It is a
member of the genus
Melanitis, and has a wingspan of 7.5 to 9.5
centimeters. On the underside of the wings, the ground-colour consists of a wavy
pattern of tawny-orange and brown. The forewings have a series of small white
spots near the apex, and there are several small indistinct whitish spots and
ocelli-like markings on the hindwings, as well as some vague pale smudges. In
Thai, the Great Evening Brown is known as
sahyan sih tahn yai (ผีเสื้อสายัณห์สีตาลใหญ่),
i.e. ‘great brown evening
Great Green Turban
Common name for a sea snail mollusc in the family
A species of
with the scientific name Buceros bicornis, and found in the forests of India,
Thailand (fig.), the Malay Peninsula and some parts of Indonesia. It is one of the largest members of the
hornbill family in Thailand, its average size equal to that of the
Its plumage is mostly black, with a white nape and neck, a white bar on the
wings, a white vent, and a white tail, with a broad black, central band. Females
are similar, but slightly smaller than males and typically, males have red eyes,
whereas those of females are white. In addition, males have a bright yellow and
black casque on top of the massive bill (fig.), which in females is bright yellow,
without the black (fig.).
Also known as the Two-horned Calao, Great Pied Hornbill and Greater Indian
Hornbill. The Great Hornbill is
long-lived, with a life expectancy approaching nearly half a century.
In Thai it is called
See also POSTAGE STAMP,
WILDLIFE PHOTOS (1) and
as well as
Asian mammal which is neither a mouse nor a
deer. Unlike deer, that belong to the
family Cervidae, and mice, which are placed in the family Muridae, this
even-toed ungulate fits in the Tragulidae family. Also distinct is that the
Greater Mouse-deer lacks the antlers of a true deer. The colour of its fur is
orange-brown with some white at the chin, neck and under parts, and some dark shades around
the nose, eyes and ears (fig.). It has the size of a small dog, growing to a shoulder
height of about 30-35 centimeter, with large eyes and small ears. Its legs are
fairly thin, looking somewhat out of proportion with the size of its body. They
are very secretive animals and live solitary in the undergrowth of dense
forests, where they feed primarily on fruit and leaves. They ruminate, i.e.
retrieve swallowed food from the front compartment of their stomach, which is
chewed a second time before being re-swallowed. It is
one of the smallest hoofed animals in the world, making it an easy prey for
leopards and pythons, hence its secretiveness. Males possess a set of enlarged
upper canines that protrude from the sides of the mouth like fangs (fig.)
and which they use for defense and to fight for mating rights. In Thai it
krajong kwai, literally ‘buffalo
chevrotain’, against the
Lesser Mouse-deer (fig.),
which is called
krajong noo, meaning ‘mouse chevrotain’. Also
called Greater Oriental Chevrotain, Larger Malay Mouse Deer and Large
Mouse-deer. See also
Common name of a
species of butterfly,
with the scientific name Polyura eudamippus. Its upperwings are pale
yellowish-white, with black edges and two long, bluish-grey spikes at the base
of each of its hindwings. Its underwings are silvery white, with on each wing
three linear, partially black-edged, yellowish-orange band-like, markings, one of which
ends in a Y-shape. Its wingspan is about 10 to 12 centimeters. Furthermore, it
has a black head with pale spots, black antennae, a dusky greyish-black thorax,
while the abdomen is yellowish-white. Its long tongue is yellowish-orange and
its legs are whitish, with tiny black bands near the base. This species occurs in South, East and
Southeast Asia, and the name Nawab derives from a Urdu term used to refer to
Muslim rulers in India. In Thailand, it is known as
phi seua leuang nahm yai kohn pihk dam (ผีเสื้อเหลืองหนามใหญ่โคนปีกดำ),
which translates as ‘black-winged yellow butterfly with a
long-spiked base’. Compare with the
Common Nawab (fig.).
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES.
Great Orange Tip
Common name of a
species of butterfly
in the family Pieridae
and with the scientific name Hebomoia glaucippe. In appearance, it is similar to
the male, white-winged
Yellow Orange Tip, i.e. a
male Yellow Orange Tip in wet-season form (fig.),
yet with some additional arrow-like, triangular black markings in the
orange patch on the
forewings. There are many subspecies, with the dominant species in
aturia, which has a black border all around the
orange patch on the
upper forewings and a double row of
outer edges of the upper hind wings, that become increasingly
diffuse and eventually disappear completely towards the inner apexes.
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES.
Great Owl Moth
Common name of a
species of large moth,
with the scientific name Erebus macrops.
Greater Racket-tailed Drongo
Name of a bird
with the scientific name Dicrurus paradiseus. It has a distinctive shape and
tail, a demonstrative and aggressive behaviour, and
an exuberant call. This medium-sized Asian passerine
lives in the forest undergrowth and can be found all over Thailand. Its plumage
is completely black with a blue sheen, with a tuft of curved back feathers on
its forehead. The elongated tail is shallowly forked, with the shafts of the two
outermost feathers greatly extended and ending in flat
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES (1)
(2), as well
Name of a
large woodpecker with the scientific name Picus flavinucha. This
bright, colourful bird in the Picidae family has uniformly, olive green
upperparts, with a conspicuous yellow nape, a rufous-brown crest and a
pale beak. It has dull grey underparts and dark chestnut primaries barred with
black. Males have a creamy yellow throat and malar area, whereas females have a
dark streaked throat and a brownish malar area. It is distinct from the Lesser Yellownape by
its black barred primaries, its unbarred underparts and by lack of a white cheek
bar. The Greater Yellownape is found in South and Southeast Asia, as well as in
China, Bhutan and Nepal, but not in the Philippines. Its natural habitats are
subtropical or tropical forests, both deciduous and evergreen, including pine
forests. In Thailand, where
it is called
nok hua khwaan yai ngon leuang, it is a common
resident of most forested areas.
European name for the former Mongolian rulers of the
Mughal dynasty in pre-India. Also
Name for a species of large butterfly,
with the binomial name Papilio memnon, and of which there are several
subspecies. Beside this, there are also different forms of males and females.
Whereas males are tailless and rather dull in colour (i.e. mostly black and deep
blue, sometimes with a red spot -
fig.), females are multi-coloured and some forms have
a swallowtail (fig.).
Great Mormons have a wingspan of between
12 and 15 centimeters. They are commonly found in Thailand and widely
distributed throughout Southeast Asia.
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES.
The silent and sad farewell of prince
Siddhartha to his wife, baby son and his royal heritage, in order to become an ascetic. In Thai
for a species of butterfly, with the scientific name Athyma larymna. It has a
wingspan of 7.5 to 10 centimeters and is overall blackish, with a brown tinge
and white bars and spots, with a pale bluish shine. The head and body are overall blackish, with a
metallic greenish sheen, whilst the antennae are black. It is very similar to
the Malay Staff Sergeant (Athyma
reta), but the outermost near vertical bar, close to the tip of
the wing, has a smaller spot above it, which is absent in the Malay Staff
Sergeant, which with a wingspan of about 6 to 7 centimeters, is also a bit
smaller. The Great Sergeant is found in tropical and subtropical Asia, but is
-at least in Thailand- rather uncommon. The term sergeant derives from the three
white bars on the wings, which is reminiscent of the insignia of the eponymous
military rank, which in general consists of three chevrons (see
military ranks). In Thai, it is called
which translates as ‘large Siamese sergeant butterfly’.
Great Slaty Woodpecker
for a species of bird in the Picidae family, with he scientific designation
Mülleripicus pulverulentus (Muelleripicus/Mulleripicus pulverulentus). With a size of about 50 centimeters, it is the
largest woodpecker in Asia, and is overall greyish in appearance, though it has
small pale spots on the head and its chin and throat are pale yellow. In
addition, males have a reddish patch at the base of the bill, which is absent in
females. In the wild, it is found from Northern India to Southwestern China and
most of Southeast Asia. Its habitat consists of dipterocarp forest and dry
evergreen forest. In Thai called
nok hua khwaan yai sih thao.
Great Spotted Cowry
Common name of a kind of sea snail,
which belongs to the family
Cypraeidae, commonly known as the cowries. This marine gastropod mollusc has
an orangey shell, which is rather oval-shaped, but with a flat underside,
and with off-white spots. At the top of the shell these spots are rounded,
but towards the edges they are more tear-like and seemingly droop down,
forming a white lower edge, which is broken by the orangey ground colour,
apparently forming vertical
bars. This mollusc is found in
coral reefs to moderate depths. It has been given the scientific
designations Cypraea guttata and Perisserosa guttata, and is also commonly
known as the Thai Spotted Cowry.
In Thai, is it called
and it is depicted on a Thai postage stamp issued in 1989, as part of a set
of four stamps on Thai molluscs (fig.).
name for a
Skipper, i.e. a small butterfly that belongs to the family Hesperiidae and
to the subfamily Hesperiinae, and which has the scientific
designation Pelopidas assamensis, named after Pelopidas, the important Theban
statesman and general in ancient Greece, as well as after the geographical
area of Assam in northeastern India. This is a variable species found in South and Southeast Asia,
and occurs in many different forms in both sexes. In general, members of
this species are brown with tiny white spots and sometimes other pale
markings. No subspecies have been described.
name for a series of originally earthen and later stone fortifications across
China, built to protect the Chinese Empire's
borders against foreign intrusions. It consists of several sections that differ
in age and which are sometimes not connected. Little of the original wall still
exist. Almost all of the Great Wall still seen today (fig.), mostly in northern China,
was built during the Ming Dynasty, after a major battle that took place on the
northern frontier in 1550. To alert of any approaching enemy armies, a system of
signaling was developed, using smoke during the day and fire during the night.
One column of smoke meant an army of 100 men was approaching, two columns meant
500 men, three columns 1,000 men, and four columns indicated an approaching army
of 5,000. It is said that in extreme emergencies wolf dung was added to the fire
to make the smoke thick and black. To this day, the Chinese saying wolf smoke
means ‘crisis’. No one knows the exact length of the entire wall, but it is said
to be the longest manmade construction on the planet, measuring at least about
6,350 kilometers. Today, the best preserved parts of the Great Wall date from
the Ming Dynasty and near
Beijing several sections of it are open to the public, including the popular Ba Da Ling section
- fig.), Ju Yong section (map
the remote but stunning (fig.)
Jin Shan Ling section (map
the Mu Tian Yu section (map), which has double battlements. The coat of arms of the
present-day Chinese police bears an illustration of the Great Wall, since they
serve and protect the nation just as the Great Wall once did (fig.). In Chinese known as
See also TRAVEL PICTURES.
Great White Pelican
for a species of cuckoo, with the binomial name Phaenicophaeus tristis. It
occurs in some parts of South and Southeast Asia. It is about 52 to 59.5
centimeters large, long-tailed and has a greyish head and greyish-green
upperparts and lower upperparts, while the throat and breast are whitish-grey
(especially in juveniles) to greyish-buff (in adults), with dark shaft streaks.
The tail is graduated and has broadly white tips to the tail feathers. The pale
greenish bill is prominent and curved, and it has black lores and white-edged, red facial skin.
Its habitat consists of secondary growth, dry scrub,
broadleaved and thin forests (fig.). Unlike most other cuckoos, this species is
non-parasitic. In Thai it is known as
nok bangrok yai.
See also POSTAGE STAMP
WILDLIFE PICTURES (1) and
Common name of
a plump, short-tailed bird with a brilliant green plumage. It has a rounded head
and a wide bill, which is almost completely covered by feathering. Males are
further characterized by black ear patches and three black bars on their wings (fig.).
Females are duller and have an unmarked plumage. Green Broadbills feed largely
on fruit, in the wild particularly on soft figs. Its scientific name is Calyptomena viridis and in Thai it is know as
nok khiao pahk ngum, which means ‘green bird
[with a] downward-curved beak’. It is a fairly
common resident in Thailand, where it dwells in evergreen forest below 800
meters. It is also found in Malaysia and Indonesia. See also
List of Thai
Animal Names and
Green Cat-eyed Snake
Name of a
Southeast Asian arboreal
snake, that inhabits forests up to 2,100
meters. It is found in
as well as in Assam,
China and Indochina. Though it is predominantly
a tree-dweller, it is at night occasionally found on the ground. It feeds on
frogs, reptiles, small birds and mammals. It has vertical cat-like pupils,
that it is a nocturnal predator, hunting at night. Its venom is mild and
harmless to humans. There are several varieties in scale colours, including overall
bright green; overall olive-green, with some darker lining between
its scales; olive-green, with a grayish or bluish hue above, a white chin and
throat, and a belly which is whitish at the back and yellowish at the front; and
overall brown with an orange-brown throat, and the head olive-green above and
yellow chin and throat. In Thai it is called
ngu khiaw bon,
ngu khiaw dong,
meaning ‘green jungle snake’. Its scientific name is Boiga cyanea. Occasionally
referred to as Green-headed Catsnake.
Green Fruited Fig
ton phak leuad.
Green Imperial Pigeon
designation for a forest pigeon, with the scientific name Ducula aenea. This
mainly arboreal dove measures between 42 and 47 centimeters in length. Both
sexes are similar and have a dark, metallic green tail and wings, with a
variable rufous to chestnut shine, whilst the head and underparts are rather
uniform –sometimes a bit vinous-tinged– pale grey, apart from the vent and
undertail coverts, which are somewhat chestnut to maroon. There are a number of
subspecies, of which Ducula aenea polia, which occurs from Southern Thailand
southwards, has a deeper song, and Ducula aenea paulina, commonly known as the
Chestnut-naped Imperial Pigeon from Sulawesi, has a distinctive chestnut patch
on the nape. In Thai it is known as nok lumphoo khiaw (นกลุมพูเขียว), nok
lumphoo (นกลุมพู) and nok ka lumphoo (นกกะลุมพู).
Common name of a small passerine bird, with the scientific designation
Aegithina viridissima. In Thai, it is called nok khamin noi sih khiao (นกขมิ้นน้อยสีเขียว).
It is olive above with a
yellow vent, dark lores and a yellow eyering (fig.). Its
wings and tail are blackish, with two whitish wing-bars. Females have but a faint eyering, yellow wing-bars,
overall duller and paler, yet greener than the
Common Iora (fig.).
Common name for a
species of sea turtle, with the scientific
designation Chelonia mydas.
It appears on a Thai postage stamp issued in 1986, as part of a set of stamps on
In Thai, it is known as tao tanu (เต่าธนู),
and derives from the shape of its front flippers.
for a widespread species of migratory leaf-warbler, found in Europe and
temperate to subtropical Asia. This insectivorous bird is placed in the family
Phylloscopidae, and has the scientific designation Phylloscopus trochiloides.
There are several subspecies, which are divided into two main groups, i.e. an
eastern group, known as Greenish Warblers and a western group, known as Green
Warblers, with most members of both groups wintering in southern Asia, from
northern India to southern
China. Generally, most members are grayish-green above and off-white below, with
a single wing bar in the western populations. Besides this, there are some
other, minor differences between the different
subspecies, such as a slight variation in colouration.
See also WILDLIFE PHOTO.
for a 37 to 40.5 centimeters tall bird in the
crow family, with the scientific designation
Green Orb Spider
for a species of spider, reminiscent of the
Golden Orb-web Spider
yet it is a species in its own right, with the scientific name
Peucetia viridana and belonging to the genus Peucetia, i.e. a genus of lynx
spiders. It is found from India to northern
Thailand and is overall bright-green in colour, with two distinctive whitish
lines that run across the back of its abdomen.
Name for a
peacock with the scientific designation Pavo muticus and native to the
tropical forests of Southeast Asia, including Thailand, where it is the largest
of all birds, though rarely seen in the wild. It dwells in mixed woodlands and
lowland clearings, especially near rivers. Green Peafowl are birds related to
the Indian Blue
but unlike the latter, both sexes of the Green Peafowl are quite similar in
appearance, making it rather difficult to distinguish the male peacock from the
female peahen. In Thai it is known as
nok yoong thai. See also
for a small wader, with the scientific designation Tringa ochropus. This 21 to
24 centimeter tall shorebird occurs in wetlands of both Asia and Africa, as well
as in Europe, and prefers freshwater. It has dark greenish-brown upperparts, a
greyish head and breast, and white underparts. It has greenish legs and an
indistinct or non-existing white supercilium. Its breeding plumage is somewhat
lighter and speckled with white. Unlike most other species of Sandpiper, this
one nests in trees. In Thai it is known as
nok chai len khiao, i.e. ‘green wetland bird’.
Green Stink Bug
Green Tiger Skimmer
for a species of
dragonfly, with the scientific name Orthetrum
sabina. It has bluish-green eyes and its abdomen has pale yellowish-green and
black stripes. Both sexes are similar. It feeds on insects, but also on other
dragonflies. In Thai it is known as
malaeng poh ban seua khiaw, i.e.
habitation dragonfly’, or
malaeng poh ban seua laai khiaw, meaning
Green Vine Snake
Long-nosed Whip Snake.
Green Water Dragon
Indochinese Water Dragon.
Green Wax Flower
Common name for a perennial climbing shrub
in the milkweed family Asclepiadaceae, which is now treated as a subfamily in
the family Apocynaceae. It has the botanical names Cynanchum louiseae,
Vincetoxicum nigrum and Dregea
volubilis, with volubilis meaning
This vine bears follicle, oval-shaped fruits that taper to a point at each end
and which usually grow in pairs. Each of this dry fruits is derived from a
single carpel, i.e. the female reproductive organ of a flower, and opens on one
side only in order to release its multiple seeds, which grow overlapping, are
broadly ovoid, turgid, off-white in colour with a beige line bordering the edge,
and surrounded by thick silky hairs, which are used as a filling for cushions
etc. The velvety seedpods are green in colour, but are
covered in a yellowish brown
powder-like layer. It's leaves are
broadly ovate, shortly acuminate at the apex and rounded at the base, and it has
small green flowers that grow in bulbous clusters.
The seedpods are in Burmese called
kyat paung thee (fig.)
and this climber is also commonly
known as Cotton Milk Plant, Green Milkweed Climber,
Black Swallow-wort, Louise's Swallow-wort, Black Dog-strangling Vine,
and Sneezing Silk. It is
distributed in Southeast Asia, on the Indian subcontinent, and in
for a species of rodent in the Sciuridae family, with the scientific name
Callosciurus caniceps. Its is mostly greyish brown, though during the dry season
the upper side becomes more orange-brown in colour, thus the species is
sometimes called Golden-backed Squirrel. It belly is somewhat lighter and it has
a long tail with thin grey bands and a black tip, which is referred to in this
species' Thai name, i.e.
haang dam (กระรอกปลายหางดำ), which literally means ‘black tail-end squirrel’. It
is endemic in Southern Myanmar, Peninsular Malaysia and Thailand, but has also
been introduced to Japan. It occurs in a variety of habitats, including primary
and secondary forests, as well as mature gardens. Its diet consists of fruits,
seeds, flowers and sometimes insects.
Common name for a species of passerine bird
with the scientific designation Arachnothera modesta.
Grey-capped Pygmy Woodpecker
for a species of small woodpecker, with the scientific name Dendrocopos
canicapillus. It is only about 14 centimeters tall, has blackish upperparts with
white markings and is black below streaked with buff. It has a white head, with
a dark grey crown and a blackish eye-stripe. It is found in open broadleaved forest,
up to an altitude of 1370 meters.
Grey-chested Jungle Flycatcher
for a small passerine bird, with the scientific name Rhinomyias umbratilis. It
belongs to the Muscicapidae family and is found in some parts of Southeast Asia,
including Indonesia, Brunei,
Thailand. Adults have brownish
upperparts, a whitish throat and a grey breast, with some olive-buff on the
sides, near the wings. It has a black bill and a dark malar. Its natural
habitats includes broadleaved evergreen forest, up to 1,160 meters. In Thai it
is known as nok jab malaeng ok thao (นกจับแมลงอกเทา), meaning
Grey-headed Fish Eagle
for a bird of prey with the binomial name Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus.
Common name for a small, circa 13 centimeters
tall, passerine bird in the flycatcher family Muscicapidae, yet it is sometimes
placed in the family Stenostiridae. It has the scientific designation Culicicapa
ceylonensis. Adults have a grey head and breast, olive upperparts and bright
yellow underparts, with a slight greyish-buff wash on the lower breast. Whilst
the crown is a bit darker, the upper breast has a somewhat paler tone of grey.
The tail and wings have dark-grey to black colouring, whilst the undertail is
a paler shade of grey. It has a pale eye-ring and the legs are pinkish, while
the bill is blackish-grey. Also known as Grey-headed Canary-flycatcher. In
Thailand, where this bird is both a common resident and a winter visitor, it is
called nok jab malaeng hua thao (นกจับแมลงหัวเทา).
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES.
name for the
Name for a
36-40 centimeter tall parrot, with the binomial name Psittacula finschii, which
commemorates the German naturalist and explorer Otto Finsch. It occurs in
Southeast Asia, especially on the mainland. It is mostly green, with a reddish
upper mandible and a yellowish lower mandible, and a grey head, which is
slightly darker with males. In addition, adult males have a small maroon
shoulder patch and some black on the centre of the throat, that runs from the
throat to behind the ear-coverts and narrowly borders the hind-crown. Females
(fig.) also have shorter tail-streamers
and are somewhat similar
to the female
Blossom-headed Parakeet, but without the shoulder patch, and
the upper mandible is reddish and the lower one yellowish, rather than
completely yellow. Juveniles are overall green and have no
shoulder patch. Its habitat consists of broadleaf and pine forests. In Thai it
for an approximately 102 centimeter tall wading bird with the scientific name
Ardea cinerea. Its plumage consists of mainly pale grey upperparts, a white S-shaped
neck with on the lower part a double row of black streaks down the throat, and off-white underparts. Adults have a white head with a slender, drooping crest,
as well as a broad black supercilium, i.e. a stripe that starts above the lore
(a small area of feathers between the bill and the eye), continues above the eye
and ends somewhere towards the back of the head, whilst juveniles have a dull
grey head. Its bill is pinkish to yellow-grey, yet is brighter in breeding
adults. In addition, adults have a black shoulder patch, which is absent in
juveniles. During flight or when seated, the bird's long neck is retracted in a hunched posture, appearing
much smaller than it actually is when standing upright (fig.). It feeds in shallow
water, slowly stalking or waiting motionless for its prey. Its diet includes
fish, frogs and insects, but also small mammals, reptiles and occasionally other
small birds or chicks. It is found in much of Europe, Africa and Asia, and is a
winter visitor to lowland areas in Thailand, both at inland wetlands and at
coastal marshes and mudflats. In Thai it is named
nok krasah nuan.
for a species of 9.5 to 11 centimeter small leaf warbler, with the scientific
name Phylloscopus xanthoschistos. It is found in parts of South, East and
Southeast Asia, including in India, Nepal, southern
Myanmar. It has a grey crown, nape and
head-sides, a pale supercilium and a dark eyestripe. Its upperparts are
yellowish-olive and the
underparts bright yellow, with some white in the undertail.
1. Common name for a
species of Leaf Monkey, with the scientific
name Trachypithecus crepusculus, and found in
Thailand, and northern
2. Another designation for the
with the scientific name
and found in India.
for a species of butterfly, with the binomial name Junonia atlites.
It belongs to the Nymphalidae family and is found in South and
Asia. Above, the
wings of both sexes
are pale greyish-brown, with the apical half of the wings somewhat paler and a
cell with, three transverse, short, sinuous black bands on the forewings (fig.). It has
several marginal oval spots placed at certain intervals, some half-ochre
half-black, with a black-and-white border and a white dot at the centre, others
plain white with a black border and a black dot at the centre.
underside of the wings of both sexes is pale greyish-brown and compared to the
upper side, the markings are much duller, though in females (fig.) they are somewhat
more distinct than in males
(fig.). The upper body is mostly
lavender-brown. In Thai, it is called
‘grey pansy butterfly’.
See also WILDLIFE PICTURES (1)
name for a species of pelican, with the scientific designation Pelecanus
philippensis, and belonging to the family Pelecanidae, of which two members are
found in Southeast Asia,
the other being the
(fig.). It is mainly white, with a grey crest and neck, on
which the feathers are raised, forming a greyish crest on the nape. It has a
yellowish-pink bill, with a yellow tip and a pinkish
pouch, and some spots on the sides of
both the upper mandible and the pouch. In the breeding season, the rump, tail
and wings are variably washed cinnamon-pinkish, and the skin of the pouch is
somewhat darker, whilst in addition it has a faint yellowish-buff patch on the
upper-breast. Juveniles have browner head-sides, neck, upperparts and
The Grey Pelican is also known as the
Grey-shanked Douc Langur
Common name for a
species of Leaf Monkey with the scientific
name Pygathrix cinerea.
Name for a 19
centimeter tall passerine bird, with the scientific name Motacilla cinerea and
belonging to the wagtail family Motacillidae. It is grey
above, with a slaty-grey crown,
ear-coverts and wings, and a narrow whitish supercilium. It has a bright yellow
breast and vent, a white throat and belly, a dark bill, and pinkish grey feet
and legs. It lives in various open habitats, often near flowing streams.
Gross Domestic Happiness
National index, usually abbreviated as GDHI, that attempts to measure the well-being and happiness
country. The term was thought up by the king of Bhutan in 1972 with
the goal to build an economy that would serve the country's unique
culture based on
spiritual values. It was later adopted by
other nations, including
Thailand. But, like many moral goals, it is
somewhat easier to state than to define and since this index is
based on rather subjective judgments about well-being, governments
may be able to manipulate it to suit their interests. The GDHI is
calculated by the ABAC Poll Research Centre of the Assumption University, from
data compiled from fact findings about happiness, with focus on Thai values and
social development. It includes factors such as economic strength, income,
commodity prices, governance, freedom, justice, environment, travel
conveniences, etc. It is calculated on a monthly basis and represented in points
on a scale of ten. The GDHI for foreigners in Thailand is in general noticeably
higher than that for Thai nationals. Also called Gross National Happiness Index
(GNHI), Gross Domestic Happiness (GDH), Gross National Happiness (GNH) and Gross
Happiness Index (GHI). In Thai called
Kwahm Suk Muan Ruam Pai Nai Phrathet for the GDHI
Kwahm Suk Muan Ruam
Pai Nai Phrathet for the GDH,
Kwahm Suk Muan Ruam Prachachaht for the GNHI or
Kwahm Suk Muan Ruam Prachachaht
for the GNH and
Kwahm Suk Muan Ruam for the GHI.
Gross Happiness Index
Gross Domestic Happiness Index.
Gross National Happiness Index
Gross Domestic Happiness Index.
Grote's Buff-tip Moth
Common name for
a species of carpenter moth in the family Notodontidae, with the scientific
binomial name Phalera grotei and endemic in the Indian Subcontinent and large
parts of East and Southeast Asia, including Thailand. It takes on a camouflage
that mimics a broken-off twig, with wings that have a bark-like colour and
pattern reminiscent of a woody stem, complete with the natural imperfections
common in bark, such as lenticels, girdle and leaf scars.
Common name of
dragonfly in the
Libellulidae family, with the scientific name Diplacodes trivialis. Adult males
have a bluish-grey body with black on the tail and some pale yellowish to
greenish markings, and blue eyes, whereas adult females are greenish with black
markings on the tail, and green eyes with some brownish-red above. Their
wingspan is between 4 to 6 centimeters. It is also commonly known as
Green-and-Blue Skimmer and Chalky Percher, and in Thai it is called
malaeng poh ban song sih khiaw fah.
Burmese. ‘Cave’ or ‘cavern’. Architectural
term for the so-called cave-style, i.e. an early
basic temple building style, with the interior dimly lit by lattice-style
perforated walls rather than open windows, as in
Gu Byauk Gyi Zedi Wetkyi-in (fig.)
Gu Byauk Gyi Zedi Myinkaba (fig.),
as well as in
Pitaka Taik (fig.),
a Buddhist library hall that housed a large collection of the
where this faintly lit interior was deemed perfect for the preservation of the
light-sensitive, palm-leaf scriptures
Gu-style temples were also typically used for meditation and devotional worship
Chinese for ‘trigram’.
Guang Mu Tian (广目天)
‘Deity who sees all’. Name of one of the
Four Heavenly Kings.
He correspondents with the Indian
Virupaksa, in Thai known as
who guards the West.
In Chinese tradition, his attributes are a pearl
symbolizes smoothness. In
Vietnam, he is known as Quang Muc (Quảng Mục), and in
full as Tay Phuong Quang Muc Thien Vuong (Tây Phương Quảng Mục Thiên Vương),
i.e. ‘Quang Muc,
of the Western Quarter’. Besides holding
the snake, he may in Vietnam also be
depicted with holding a sword (fig.),
rather than a pearl. Compare with
Thien Khuyen, the Vietnamese
Judge of the Hells (fig.).
Guan Yu (关羽)
Kuan U (fig.).
Fruit bearing evergreen tree which grows up to a height of ten meters with the Latin name
and the Thai name
(fig.). It is recognizable by its yellowish-white blossoms (fig.)
and by its relatively tasteless fruits of the same name. The flesh is white and
its core contains many small white seeds, although there is also a species of
which the white flesh has a pinkish red core, a variety known
in Thai as
farang sai daeng or
farang chae buay
farang kee nok.
farang kee nok.
guay jab (ก๋วยจั้บ)
Thai. A paste made of
rice flour in the form of sheets which are cut up, put in a soup and topped with slices of chicken or pork. Also kuay jab.
guay tiyaw (ก๋วยเตี๋ยว)
Thai. A popular dish usually sold at roadside food stalls and consisting of
Gu Byauk Gyi (ဂူပြောက်ကြီး)
Gu Byauk Gyi Zedi.
Gu Byauk Gyi Zedi (ဂူပြောက်ကြီးစေတီ)
Name of two Buddhist temples in
Byauk Gyi Zedi Wetkyi-in and
Gu Byauk Gyi Zedi Myinkaba.
Gu Byauk Gyi Zedi Myinkaba (ဂူပြောက်ကြီးစေတီမြင်းကပါ)
Name of a Buddhist temple in Bagan, located
near Myinkaba Village.
Gu Byauk Gyi Zedi Wetkyi-in
Name of a Buddhist temple in Bagan, located to the southeast of
Another name for
god of war, and
Chinese for ‘turtle’
or ‘tortoise’. See also
Chinese for ‘tortoise-snake’.
Gui Men Guan (鬼门关)
Chinese. ‘Ghost Gate Mountain Pass’. Name of the Gate of Hell in
Gui Yue (鬼月)
Chinese. ‘Ghost Month’. Name of a Chinese festival,
known as Ghost Festival, that
coincides with the seventh Chinese lunar month in which the deceased come
i.e. the lower world, and visit the living, whereas on
Qing Ming the
living pay homage to their ancestors by tending to their graves. During
Ghost Month and especially on the thirteenth day, which is called Ghost Day,
Chinese Buddhists perform rituals to transmute and absolve the sufferings of
the deceased by burning
paper paraphernalia and/or hell money.
People also make altars in front of
their homes and give food offerings to the deceased, whose wandering spirits
may return at night to visit, a tradition that is also upheld during many
other Chinese festivals.
In some tales it is told that the Chinese guardians of hell, i.e.
Hei Bai Wu Chang
the Ghost Festival and reward the good by granting them pieces of gold. Other festivities may
lotus-shaped lanterns adrift on the water
at sundown (fig.),
similar to the Thai festival of
Loi Krathong (fig.),
and also performed during the Spirit Festival, which in Chinese is called
Xia Yuan Jie. Also known as
Zhong Yuan Jie.
Compare with the Thia festival of
Phi Tah Khohn.
‘Demon King’ or ‘Ghost King’. Name of the
king of demons, who is sometimes described as, or associated with
Like the latter
Gui Wang is often portrayed with his tongue sticking out.
However, the term Gui Wang is also used to describe a variety of
demon kings of different class, such as the animal king of ghosts,
the poultry or chicken king of ghosts, etc.
Gulf of Thailand
Common name for a 34.5 to 37.5 centimeter tall seabird
of the tern family Sternidae, with the scientific name Gelochelidon nilotica,
which in Thai is called nok nang nuan kae pahk nah (นกนางนวลแกลบปากหนา). It
has a silver-grey rump and uppertail, a white head with a dark mask and a
heavy dark bill. It has slender wings and a shallow tail-fork. It natural
habitat consists of coastal areas, as well as large rivers, lakes, marshes
Chinese. Literally ‘stick’ or ‘rod’, but often referred
to in English as ‘staff’. A Chinese long weapon used in martial arts. It
consists of a simple wooden pole, either tapered or straight, which is
traditionally made of wax wood, a strong, yet flexible material that can
easily absorb shocks without breaking. It is considered one of the four
basic Chinese martial arts weapons, along with the spear, the sabre, and the
sword, and is often referred to as the grandfather of all weapons. There are
various kinds of gun and they can have any length, though the most commonly
used is a gun which length is around the height of the user.
gu niang guo (姑娘果)
Chinese. ‘Paternal aunt fruit’ or ‘young lady fruit’.
Name for the orangey to reddish fruits of the
Chinese Lantern (fig.).
Guo Nian (过年)
Chinese. ‘Pass the year’. Name for the first day of Chinese New Year. The
name derives from a Chinese mythical monster, called
Nian, which once a year, at the
beginning of spring, terrorized the people of a certain Chinese village. Also
Xin Nian, literally ‘New Year’ and
‘Spring Festival’. In Thai
1. A mighty dynasty situated in the
Ganges valley from 320 to 535 AD.
2. An earlier art form from northern India considered the classical period in Indian art. This art form influenced 5th century art found at Selagri Hill (Myanmar) depicting relief scenes from the life of
Buddha, and 8th century terracotta
Dvaravati figures found in
‘spiritual leader’ and ‘teacher’. The Thai word
kruh (teacher) is derived from it.
‘Doorway to the
guru’. A Sikh religious complex, usually a temple building and a place to rest.
It often houses a copy of the
sacred Sikh scripture, Guru
Granth Sahib, i.e. the
a hymn book considered
so sacred that it is carried on the head and has its own bed and bedroom within
Sihk temple. Each
morning, at dawn, the book is carried to the sanctum
in a special
in an opening ritual called
which means ‘light’. Each
evening, the scripture is transported back to its bedroom in reverse manner and
tucked back into its bed, in a closing ritual known as sukhasana, a compound
term of the words
and meaning ‘throne of delight’ or ‘position of happiness’. Also transcribed gurudvara.
Belgian diplomat and adviser to
who in 1897
AD was hired
Chulalongkorn (fig.) to
set up the
Police’ force, which
was established as a branch of
the armed forces responsible for internal security, i.e. a military component
with jurisdiction in civil law enforcement, in order to make the police a more
national force, beyond the capital, akin to the gendarmerie. Gustave Shau became its first
Commander-in-Chief and was later appointed to the fifth Chief of
Police, serving as Major General from 1913 to 1915, under his Thai
a Thai designation also used for
Phra Narai (fig.),
Royal Thai Police.
Korean term meaning
overwork’, a growing and disturbing work culture phenomenon that is widespread in several parts of Asia and
which is typically
caused by heart attacks or strokes due to stress and a starvation diet, though
mental stress from the workplace can also trigger workers to take their own
lives. It is a common cause of death in South Korea as well as in Japan, two of Asia's
most overworked countries. In the former, workers are often pressed into working
in excess of the legal maximum of 52 working hours per week, as limited by a new
South Korean Labour Law policy introduced in 2020, in order to prevent gwarosa. In Japan,
where people seemingly live to work and put in an average of 49 hours per week,
phenomenon of death by overwork is known as karoshi (過労死),
and drives over 200 employees to their deaths every year. See also
An alternative transliteration for