Modern Siam and the Map title Deed


  • Kanitha Chitchang History Department,Faculty of Social Sciences Kasetsart University


The introduction of the Map Title Deed during the reign of King Rama V of the Rattanakosin era is one of the indicators that showed that Siam was in the process of Modernization. It was an important mechanism for the Thai Elite to use as tool to centralize their power under the bureaucratic administration, because the Government could check on who owned any land, and who was residing there, especially with regard to the Chinese. As the complexities of land use increased, especially in the area of the lower Chaophraya-Basin, there was increased conflict between the State and the commoners based on “what kind of persons” could own land, with arguments between those who could afford the high land prices and those who wanted to exploit the land by themselves. The Government resolved these problems by an edict on the Map title Deed, so that anyone who had registered land was considered the owner. Moreover, the Deed could also be used to clear up any conflict by differentiating between the State’s property and private ownership.


How to Cite

Chitchang, K. (2015). Modern Siam and the Map title Deed. Thammasat Review, 16(3), 136–163. Retrieved from