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  Khun Paen

Khun Paen is the name of a legendary Ayuthayan warrior living some 450 years ago. His name later became the name of a kind of votive tablets found at Wat Bankrang, Suphanburi Province, about a century ago.

It is amulets collectors of the previous generation who named such the votive tablets "Khun Paen" just because the name was widely known to Thai people as an important legendary figure. There is actually no relation between the votive tablets themself and Khun Paen. And the figure image appears on the votive tablet is Lord Buddha, not Khun Paen.

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Votive tablets "Khun Paen" of Wat Bankrang.
Left : Large Chest Type.           Right : Small Chest Type.

Practically and systematically, Thai votive tablets (amulets of Buddha image) of every kind have their own general names. It is amulets collectors of the previous generation named some kind of amulets "Khun Paen" just for easy-to-remember purpose. And it is quite clear that all general names of Thai votive tablets originated after they had been found, not orginated at first-made in the ancient time.
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Votive tablets "Khun Paen" of Wat Bankrang.
Left: Songphol Yai Type.       Right: Soom Thao Walya Type.

But anyway it was widely said that such the votive tablets had miraculous effects on self protection and invulnerability. Meanwhile it was rumored that they had lady-attraction effect.This is why most Thai ladies do not want their husbands wearing the amulet Khun Paen, fearing that they may be so attractive to other ladies!!  

Apart from Wat Bankrang Temple, votive tablets Khun Paen of another kind were also found at Wat Phra Roop Temple, the same Suphanburi Province. Such the votive tablets were named Khun Paen "Khai Pha".
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Yellowish glazed votive tablet "Khun Paen", Large Chest Type,
Wat Yai Chai Mongkol.

In the former capital Ayuthaya Province, votive tablets Khun Paen were also found at these 3 historical sites:

1. At Wat Yai Chai Mongkol Temple, 2 major kinds of votive tablets found here: one was Khun Paen "Kluab" or yellowish glazed Khun Paen made from clay mixed with kaolin using Sawankaloke's porcelain techniques on creation; the other was Khun Paen "Bai Phutsa" of
both terra-cotta and tin-based alloy.

2. At Wat Monthien Temple, called Khun Paen "Bai Sema", terra- cotta.

3. At Wat Rajaburana Temple, also called Khun Paen "Bai Phutsa". They are not terra-cotta but a thin tin-based alloy.   

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Yellowish glazed votive tablets "Khun Paen", Wat Yai Chaimongkol.
Left: Large Chest Type.             Right: Kaen-On Type.

All the votive tablets Khun Paen of 5 kinds made in Ayuthaya period of between 300-500 years ago. So they are old antique amulets. The most well-known is of Wat Bankrang Temple, but the most expensive is of Wat Yai Chai Mongkol Temple. And of the other three kinds are moderately popular and medium-priced. The pictures depict here in this content are amulets Khun Paen from those 5 sites. They are typical and standard amulets Khun Paen accepted by veteran Thai amulets collectors.  
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Votive tablets "Khun Paen" Bai Phutsa, Wat Yai Chai Mongkol.
Left : Terra-cotta.       Right : Edge-cut, tin-based alloy.

Please keep in mind that the clever frauds pick out some points of Khun Paen's legend to make fiction-based amulets Khun Paen.They deceive people to gain money!!


I strongly stress here with cautions because so many of my foreign Net readers have been misunderstanding about the amulets Khun Paen. Those strange-look Khun Paens cannot protect the wearers!!

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Left: Votive tablet "Khun Paen" Khai Pha of Wat Phraroop.     
Right: Votive tablet "Khun Paen" Bai Sema of Wat Monthien.


Legendary Khun Paen lived between 1491-1529. He was born in Suphanburi Province (some 70 km.northwest of Bangkok) but grew up in the close-bordered Kanchanaburi Province, where the world wide well-known "Bridge over River Kwai" situated.

He was a disciple of Acharn Kong, a magic-expert guru monk, for magical studies. Based on old legends, Khun Paen was handsome and very attractive to ladies. It's so he had many wives, and still many ladies fell in love with him. Khun Paen had magical knowledge. He used magic to make himself invulnerable and unseen to enemies, to change the marching track of the enemies to become labyrinthine field, and to change leaves of the tree to become wasps to sting enemies etc.

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Left:  Luang Phor Aant's yellow glazed Khun Paen. 
Right: A very rare-to-find item, Luang Phor Aant's green glazed Khun Paen. 
Click to read details on LP Aant's Khun Paen
By Khun Paen's skillful fighting, he was appointed by the king to be Khun or a high-ranking military officer. His biography was far more extended and rather a fictitious story by poetic authors of the early Ratanakosin period or some 180 years ago. His baby-ghost son named Guman Thong, he used magic to create him from a dead baby in the dead Bua Klee's womb. Bua Klee was a Khun Paen's minor wife. As on a legend making Guman Thong is thrilling and has a complicated ritual. 
Good and efficacious new-version Khun Paen made by Gurus are not so many. One among the best I would like to recommend-- is made by the late Luang Phor Aant Wat Phra Yatigaram, Ayuthaya Province. Luang Phor Aant was the closest disciple of Luang Phor Glaan, Wat Phra Yatigaram, which Thai people worship as a greatest Guru monk. Luang Phor Aant made Khun Paen amulets in B.E.2496 in style of the yellowish glazed Khun Paen, Wat Yai Chai Mongkol.

Presently, LP Aant's Khun Paen amulet is also a rare-to-find item. Some other Gurus' Khun Paen could well be used so efficaciously, such as LP Puak of Wat King Kaew, LP Thir of Wat Palaelai, LP Kruen of Wat SangKho, LP Boi of Wat Manao, LP Taem of Wat PhraLoi, LP Daeng of Wat Thungkok, LP Thiam of Wat Kasattrathiraj, LP Rian of Wat NongBua, LP Kuay of Wat Kositaram, LP Tae KongThong of Wat SamNgam, LP Pae of Wat PikulThong, LP Chot of Wat Tano, LP Thoop of Wat Kae (Nang Lerng), LP Chaem of Wat Don Yai Hom, LP Dee of Wat Phra Roop, LP Juan of Wat Kaitia,etc.             

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