Civil Rights in Cross-Cultural Marriage before 1932

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Dararat Mattariganond


This article aims to explore civil rights in cross-cultural marriage through the law and announcements are enforced in the period before 1932. The study uses the historical research method. The study finds that the law on cross-cultural marriage assumed that was issued during the Phra Ekathotsarot period (1605-1610/1611) and civil rights in cross-cultural marriage have been control by the State issued a law that controlled an individual’s sexual relationships. Initially, controlled the families of women who were married to Westerners or to men of difference religions other than Buddhism. In case of violation, the most severe penalty was death. Later, during the era of Somdet Phra Narai (1656-1688), an announcement was made that controlled sexual relationships of both women and men. In case of violation, again, death was the most severe form of punishment. In addition, families who allowed their children to have sexual relationships with Westerners or people of other religions were also punished. However, the cross-cultural marriage restrictions among people of lower classes were eased during the era of King Rama IV, until the era of King Rama V the Thai state promulgated an act on marriage for foreigners. The exception concerned male royalty and government officials, who needed state permission to marry a foreigner.


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Mattariganond, D. (2013). Civil Rights in Cross-Cultural Marriage before 1932. Journal of Mekong Societies, 7(3), 53–76. Retrieved from