|It is obvious that, previous to 1600, the Siam Kingdom has been
powerful. The Kingdom ruled over parts of Laos, Cambodia, Burma and the
Already at that time, the King had an international outlook which may
be understood from e.g. the treaty with Portuguese since 1511 and the
frequent employing of foreigners to the ministerial post of ‘phrakhlang’.
For example, Persian, Chinese, Indian and Greek persons hold the post.
The King himself has been in charge of international trade and
foreign affairs. Trade has been driven with the Dutch, the British, the
French and the Portuguese. Moreover, diplomatic missions have been
exchanged with France and with Holland.
Since 1518, the Portuguese had a trading post in Malacca and through
that post they possessed an influential military power. Therefore, the
King of Siam appreciated the Dutch as a welcome military power,
stabilizing the situation. As a sign of this appreciation, the King
offered the Dutch a special treatment: a preferencial site for their
factorij, known as the Hollandze Logie. The VOC had this Logie, the
settlement in Ayutthaya, from 1608 unto1767. This period is longer than
any other European nation had in Ayutthaya. Also the VOC got a
preferencial trading position, in fact a monopoly.
Though beautiful paintings have been produced concerning Judea by
e.g., Alain Mallet, in none of them the Logie has been presented.
Nevertheless, sketches of the settlement are available
Hollandze Logie: Rise and fall
After its foundation in 1602, the VOC commenced a fast trading effort
towards Asia. In 1604, representatives of the VOC were in the busy
harbour of Pattani where some Siamese ambassadors mentioned that the
Siamese King wanted to send a mission to China soon. The Dutch wanted
eagerly participate in that mission and maybe so getting access to the
Chinese emperor and the silk trade
Later-on, diplomatic an trading relations with Siam have been
established. As an outcome, Thai diplomats visited Holland, together
with the company of an interpreter. They went on audience with King
Maurits in The Hague. Maurits received a letter of the King of Siam
together with some presents. The ambassadors visited some important
VOC-cities such as Amsterdam, Hoorn and Enkhuizen
From time to time, for various reasons not to detail here, the VOC
closed the settlement in Ayutthaya, e.g. in 1620. Both the King of Siam
and the VOC director (Van Nijenrode) were not happy with that decision.
Therefore the King sent a letter to the Prince of Oranje. As a
consequence, in 1628, the office has been re-opened and new good
relations were a fact. Dutch settlement in Ayutthaya has been closed
several other times too: 1705, 1740, 1747.
In the 18th century an end came to both Ayutthaya as capital of the
Kingdom of Siam and the Dutch settlement. First, in 1760, there was a
Burmese attack on Ayutthaya. It was robbed, burned and destroyed. The
VOC office was robbed too. Shortly later, in 1767, another Burmese
attack followed. During this attack the VOC buildings burnt down and
As a consequence, the King moved to Thonburi and made this the new
capital. Though the King of Siam has requested the Dutch to return to
Thailand, to the new capital Thonburi, no trading post have been
In the years after, the site of the Dutch settlement has frequently
been flooded and sediment has been deposited on the remains.