Chiang Mai

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Chiang Mai

(jyäng` mī`) or


(jyĕng`–), city (1990 pop. 164,902), capital of Chiang Mai prov., N Thailand, on the Ping River, near the Myanmar border. It is the economic, cultural, and religious center of the northern provinces. The terminus of a railroad from Bangkok, Chiang Mai is also linked to the capital by air and highway. The city is a shipping point for the agricultural products of the surrounding region. Long the center of Thailand's teak industry, Chiang Mai also produces silver and wood articles, pottery, and silk and cotton goods. Tourism is a growing industry, and the city has also become a design center. Chiang Mai's population is mainly Lao.

The city, a center of a Lao kingdom from the 11th cent., became after the 14th cent. a target of dispute between the Burmese and the Siamese. The Burmese invasions ceased in the 19th cent., and Chiang Mai was fully incorporated into Thailand. The city consists of an 18th-century walled town on the right bank of the Ping and a new town on the left bank that developed around the railroad station. The Univ. of Chiang Mai (1963), a teachers college, and a technical institute are in the city.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Chiang Mai


(also Chieng Mai), a medieval Laotian kingdom in what is now northern Thailand. Chiang Mai took its name from the city of Chiang Mai, which had been founded by Meng Rai, a Laotian ruler of the Chiang Rai principality, after he had conquered Haripunchaya.

Over a period beginning in the late 14th century, Chiang Mai waged frequent wars against the Siamese kingdom of Ayutthaya. For most of the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries, Chiang Mai was controlled by either the Burmese or the Siamese. The kingdom was a vassal of Burma from 1556 until 1595, when it became a vassal of Ayutthaya. Burma conquered the territory in 1615 and held it until 1662, when the Siamese captured it. The Burmese reconquered the territory in 1664. Chiang Mai enjoyed independence from 1727 until 1764, when it was once again conquered by Burma. In 1775, Chiang Mai was conquered by Taksin and incorporated into Siam.

Chiang Mai


(also Chieng Mai), a city in Thailand; situated on the Ping River, a tributary of the Chao Phraya. Population, 65,700 (1960). Chiang Mai is the capital of Chiang Mai Province. It is the terminus of a railroad from Bangkok. The city’s industries include logging (mainly the procurement of teak), timber flotation, sawmilling, and the manufacture of food products, including tobacco products. From the 13th to the 18th century, Chiang Mai was the capital of a kingdom that was also called Chiang Mai.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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