Nakhon Sawan has existed since before the Sukhothai era. The name of this city appears in Sukhothai’s stone inscription and it was called Phra Bang city which was an important frontier city for the wars. It later changed to Chon Tawan city and finally to Nakhon Sawan, but normally it was called Pak Nam Pho city. There is some archaeological evidence that indicated that Nakhon Sawan had been an agricultural city since the beginning of the historical era, and later acted as a centre of transportation and a location for Chinese traders.
Nakhon Sawan is located between the Central and Northern regions. The province, therefore, serves as a ‘gateway to the Northern region,’ as well as an important transportation centre for the lower Northern region. It is also a place where four main rivers; namely Ping, Wang, Yom, and Nan, converge. The four rivers come together to form Thailand’s great river, the Chao Phraya River. Thailand’s largest freshwater lake or Bueng Boraphet is also located here, a vast lake and swamp abundant with species of plants and birds, providing a habitat for a hundred
Koei Chai Palm juice
Wat Koei Chai Nuea (Borommathat)
Wat Koeichaineua (Borommadhat) currently located at 1/1 Moo 4, Tumbon Koeichai, Amphur Chum Saeng, Nakhon Sawan Province. The temple is on the river bank of Yom River and Nan River with total area of 26 Rai, 2 Ngan and 92 Tarangwah. The temple was established in the year B.E. 2390 and was granted Wisugcamsima (Royal Religious Property Status) in the year B.E. 2400 and continued to be that in that status under the administration by monks until today.
It is believed that the temple was originally built during Sukhothai period with minimum estimation timeframe to be around B.E. 1906 - 1912, making this temple to be approximately656 years old. The estimation on the age of this temple came from the architecture of the Phra Borromdhat Chedi which was built in an inverted bell style (Lanka Style) with octagonal shape base without any pillar. Other indication includes the finding of twin parapet (twin stone pillar boundary markers) in scroll pattern made from slate stone. Originally, this temple was called Wat Phra Borommadhat based on document found by Northern Buddhism Ministry administration body in B.E. 2457 during a visit from Krom Phraya Wachirayanwaroros, Siam’s Supreme Patriarch at that time. It was written as follow;
“At almost 9 in the morning, the possession departed from the embarkation point in front of Wat Chum Saeng. Travelling downstream along with local participants in approximately 10 vessels, turning into Yom River from Nan River, at approximately 1 Sen (20 Wah) from the turn, arriving at Wat Phra Borommadhat. His holiness, The Patriarch then proceeded into the temple ground and described the twin parapet (twin stone pillar boundary markers) in scroll pattern made from slate stone, a rounded pagoda around 3 Wah in height with octagonal shape base without any pillar which indicate that the pagoda contains a holy relic. His Holiness also aware of the temple annual festivals, grant gifts to monks and local followers then retired to the possession”
In the year B.E. 2460, Wat Phra Borommadhat changed the name to Wat Koeichaineua (Borommadhat) based on governmental order until today. As evidenced in the historic recording from a visit by His Holiness the Supreme Patriarch, many important religious relics and is highly revered by the populations making the temple one of the holiest ground in the region.
As for temple renovation and repair records, there is no official documentation found, only by the accounts passed on down from successive generations. The up-keep of Phra Borromtaat Chedi is in sync with the repair of Wat Bhodiphratapchang in Phichit province during the reign of Somdet Phra Sanphet VIII or Phra Chao Sua (Dua), 29th king of Ayutthaya between the year B.E. 2246 - 2251. Based on Ayutthaya Royal Historic Document, Phra Chao Sua was born at Bahn Bhodiphratapchang in Phichit during His Majesty’s father, Phra Phetraja’s and His Majesty’s mother in following of King Narai The Great of Siam to worship the revered Phra Buddha Chinnaraht. When Phra Chao Sua ascended the throne in B.E. 2246, he ordered the building of a temple at the location he recollected his mother’s story about his birth place. It took a little over 2 years to complete the construction.
Historically, Ban Koeichai was mentioned again during King Taksin while he was putting down rebel’s Army in Phitsanulok. During one of the battle, he was injured in the leg and his army was forced to retreat.
Based on previously mentioned evidences, it is certain that this temple has existed ever since Sukhothai and Ayutthaya period all the way to the recount of this temple by the Supreme Patriarch during his visit. Moreover, Koeichai had an Amphor status during the reign of King Rama VI after Amphur Panlan was downgraded to Tambon. All of this was recorded in the Royal Periodical, Issue 20, Page 498 dated 25 October B.E. 2446 (Rattanakosin Era 122) during which, Lord Luang Phadungdansawan was the town’s sheriff. The information was indicative that Koeichai was a large and prosperous Amphur until a change was made and Amphur status was move to Chum Saeng and Koeichai status was downgraded to Tambon until today.
Based on a recount of former Lord Abbot of Wat Koeichaineua (Borommadhat), the Venerable Phrakru Nithandhammapranath stated that in B.E. 2513, The Venerable Luangpor Thongyoo (Phrakru Niraphaivithet) lead followers in renovating the Phra Borommadhat Chedi. In that rebuilding effort, discovered at the peak of the pagoda were 5 upside downed stone-set bowls and found within them was a relic in red crystal measured 1 inch long and 2 centimeters across, consistent with relics of Lord Buddha’s disciples.
The former lord abbot also recounted about a time in B.E. 2533, during the monastic boundary and the inauguration ceremony for the temple’s new chapel, there was a phenomenon occurred at the pier in front of Phra Borommadhat Chedi when water in the river was boiling for 2-3 days. This caused amazement for local population who came to see and the event was indicative of Phra Borommadhat Chedi miracle for all to witness. Since then, the worship has been continuously celebrated every year in two times. The first event consists of the gilding, the robbing of Phra Borommadhat Chedi and Palm festival. The festivity is done with the cooperation of Tumbon Koeichai Subdistrict Administrative Organization on the 14th-15th Lunar Month, the 5th Month of each year. The second event is the gilding of Phra Borommadhat Chedi and the traditional boat race with the cooperation of Tumbon Koeichai Administrative Organization on the 1st-2nd Lunar Month, the 11th Month of each year. As far as historic research to the earliest possible timeframe, the Lord Abbots are listed as follow;
- The Venerable Phra Ajarn Pan (B.E. 2400-2430)
- The Venerable Phra Samuson (B.E. 2430-2466)
- The Venerable Phrakru Niraphaivithet (Luangpor Thongyoo, B.E. 2466-2524)
- The Venerable Phrakru Nithandhammapranath (Thiang Phahatatoh , B.E. 2524-2546)
- The Venerable Phrakru Nithanpunyaphiwaht, Monk Dean, Chum Saeng Amphur (B.E. 2546 – present)