Pravitra Crest
Prince Pravitra

Mom Chuen Pravitra (below)

Mom Juen Pravitra
His Royal Highness Prince Pravitra was born on 27 May 1875, 15th child of His Majesty King Chulalongkorn, and an only child of Chao Chom Manda Cham (daughter of His Excellency Praya Maha Amatya of the Kalayanamitra family).

The Prince was one of the elder princes, and was one of the first four eldest sons to be sent to England and France for his education.  He was a specialist in languages, and King Chulalongkorn prepared him to work in the Royal Secretariat. On his return to Thailand, he became private secretary to Her Majesty The Queen Regent Sri Bajarindra, and also became a member of her Council of Regency during the Queens appointment as Regent of Thailand, during King Chulalongkorn's trips abroad.  Later, he also became private secretary to his half-brother, His Majesty King Vajiravudh (Rama VI) whom he was closed to, as well as becoming a member of the King's Privy Council.

Prince Pravitra took two sisters as consorts, Mom Chuen and Mom Choy of the Kalayanamitra family.  They were the daughters of His Excellency Chao Praya Surasih Visishtha Sakdi. The Prince had 7 children from his two consorts, namely:

(by Mom Chuen)  
1. HSH Prince (Mom Chao) Kalayanawongse Pravitra Pravitra  
2. HSH Prince (Mom Chao) Chitra Pridi Pravitra  
3. HSH Prince (Mom Chao) Vikrom Surasih Pravitra  
4. HSH Princess (Mom Chao) Kanishtha Kumari Pravitra  
(by Mom Choy)  
5. HSH Prince (Mom Chao) Sihavilas Pravitra  
6. HSH Princess (Mom Chao) Svasti Vadhanodom Pravitra  
7. HSH Prince (Mom Chao) Kavi Visishtha Pravitra  

Prince Pravitra died on 9 December 1919, at the age of 44.

His descendants use the family name of Pravitra na Ayudhya.

พระเจ้าบรมวงศ์เธอ พระองค์เจ้าประวิตรวัฒโนดม กรมหลวงปราจิณกิติบดี
Prince Pravitra with King Rama V

Multiple Kalayanamitra Links Within the Royal Family

At left is a photograph of His Majesty King Chulalongkorn (2nd right) with 3 generations of Kalayanamitra ladies. The two ladies standing next to the king were Princess Charoen Sri Jonmayu and Princess Beatrice Bhadra Yuvadi, daughters with Chao Chom Manda Saeng, a Kalayanamitra family member. The seated lady is Princess Putri, The Princess Voraserth Suda, daughter of King Rama III and Chao Chom Manda Ung of the Kalayanamitra Family. Prince Pravitra is standing on the right and his mother, Chao Chom Manda Cham of the Kalayanamitra family is seated on the floor.

The Princess Voraserth Suda was born on 17 June 1828, youngest daughter of King Rama III. She was the guardian of Queen Dhepsirindra, mother of King Chulalongkorn, as well as a respected teacher of the king's and the children of King Rama IV. The Princess died on 1 December 1907, the last surviving child of King Rama III, and who also lived the longest out of King Rama III's children, being 80 years old when she died.

The Kalayanamitra is a noble family decended from Chao Praya Nikorn Bodintr, a successful businessman of Chinese ancestry, born in Siam. He was close to King Rama III, who was closely involved with business dealings with China. Prince Pravitra's mother was a Kalayanamitra, as well as his two consorts.

พระเจ้าบรมวงศ์เธอ พระองค์เจ้าบุตรี กรมหลวงวรเสรฐสุดา
Prince Pravitra's eldest son, Prince Kalayanawongse Pravitra Pravitra was born on 24 September 1906. Not much was known of him except that he was sent to the US for his education, and settled down there marrying Marie Scherff in 1942. Their daughter, Mom Rajawongse Kalya Pravitra, was born on 8 March 1943. She married William J. Crawford on 9 June 1962, and has two children: Kimberly Crawford (born 18 May 1964) and Robert J. Crawford (born 28 December 1965). It was said that Prince Kalayanawongse committed suicide on 9 February 1944, for unknown reasons.
Prince Kalayanawongse Pravitra Pravitra
Prince Chitra Pridi Pravitra


His Serene Highness Prince Chitra Pridi Pravitra was born on 25 February 1908. Though he was the second son, he became the eldest son when his elder brother did not return to Thailand from the US. He took charge of looking after the Pravitra family. The prince attended Malvern College, England when he was 12 years old, as well as an English university, returning to Thailand 14 years later in 1933. He went to work in the accounting department of the Crown Bureau. He married Mom Luang Muanchandra Darakara, daughter of Chao Praya Sri Pipat Ratana Rajakosa Dhipbodi of the Royal House of Darakara, on 31 August 1934. The ceremony was performed by His Majesty King Rama VII at the Dusit Mahaprasat Throne Hall in the Grand Palace. They had 4 children namely:

  • Pol.MajGen. Mom Rajawongse Chetchandra Pravitra
  • Mom Rajawongse Suchartchandra Pravitra
  • Capt. Mom Rajawongse Thavatchandra Pravitra
  • Thanpuying (Mom Rajawongse) Muanchit BhiromBhakdi

While working at the Crown Bureau, the prince represented His Majesty King Rama VII on numerous occasions. The prince left the Crown Bureau in 1942 due to heart problems, and was ordered by the doctor to rest. When he got better, he set up a tractor business with some partners in 1945. His heart problem returned in early 1954, which ultimately caused his death on 24 May. He was only 46 years old.


The Novelist

Her Serene Highness Princess Svasti Vadhanodom Pravitra was born on 28 April 1911. She was an accomplished novelist in Thailand, under the pseudonym "Duang Dao." Many of her novels have been made into films or soap operas for television. It is assumed that many novels were based on her life, or the people closed to her, especially in the Royal circle. The princess received the Narathip Award for writers in 2001. She passed away on 1 September 2001 at the age of 90 years. She never married, but was said to be close to His Serene Highness Prince Aakars Damkerng Rabibadhana, son of His Royal Highness Prince Rabi Badhanasakdi, Prince of Rajaburi. The prince did ask for the princess' hands in marriage, but she rejected his proposal. The prince was also a celebrated author using the pseudonym of "Voraseth," and did not marry anyone else.

Princess Svasti Vadhanodom Pravitra
ม.จ. สวาสดิ์วัฒโนดม ประวิตร
Pravitra Princes
Prince Rangsit Prayurasakdi of Jainad hosted a Gathering of King Chulalongkorn's grandchildren at Vithyu Palace, 19 December 1938.
Pravitra Princes

At left, from left to right, top row: Prince Sanidh Prayurasakdi Rangsit, Prince Vikrom Surasih Pravitra, Prince Chitra Pridi Pravitra. At right, top row, from left to right: Prince Kavi Visishtha Pravitra, Prince Sihavilas Pravitra. At left, bottom row, left to right: Prince Samagom Kitiyakara, Prince Bhanubandhu Yugala, Prince Thakol Kaival Rabibadhana, Prince Khacharachob Kitiguna Kitiyakara. At right, bottom row, left to right: Prince Aditya Dibabha and Prince Chula Chakrabongse. Below right: Princess Kanishta Kumari Pravitra, at the same gathering.

  • HSH Prince Vikrom Surasih Pravitra, born 15 June 1911, died 8 February 1949, aged 37.
  • HSH Prince Kavi Visishtha Pravitra, born 7 April 1913, died 14 January 1957, aged 43.
  • HSH Prince Sihavilas Pravitra, born 22 October 1909, died 19 October 1983, aged 73.
  • HSH Princess Kanishtha Kumari Pravitra, born 13 November 1919, died 1 May 1951, aged 31.
Princess Kanishtha Kumari Pravitra
Updated 14 October 2019  

I am a descendant of Prince Pravitra through my mother, who is the youngest daughter of Prince Chitra Pridi Pravitra, second son of Prince Pravitra Vadhanodom. He is thus my great-grandfather. It is quite a privilege to descend from such an individual, a son of a great king, though the prince himself was a quiet and dignify man, who gave his most to his work and his country. He died too young at just 44.

Prince Pravitra worked in the Secretariate to the King all his life, most importantly as secretary to Her Majesty the Queen Regent during her regency as Ruler of Siam during King Chulalongkorn's first European Voyage in 1897. He then became Private Secretary to His Majesty King Vajiravidh (Rama VI), from 1911 until his death in 1919. He was also a Member of the Privy Council to King Vajiravudh.

Laguages were Prince Pravitra's notable achievements, fluent in Thai, English, French and German as well as Magahi, the ancient language of the Buddhist Scripture, and Pali-Sanskrit the roots of the Thai language. He also studied the arts of the Yantra, or cabalistic writing, which used the Khmer based letters.

I began collecting photographs and documents relating to my great-grandfather sometime ago, having received some from old family acquaitances, as well as acquiring through different sellers both in Thailand and internationally, I began to piece together his life, and his character. I believe I have his kindred spirit. As we are marking the centenary of his passing on 9 December 2019, I made the best efforts to publish a book about him in time for the important Buddhist ceremony on the date.

Prince Pravitra Book

The book is called "Love & Remembrance : From Great-grandson to Great-grandfather", a direct tribute from me to him. It's published in Thai only, I'm afraid. The book will be launched on Thursday 28 November 2019 at Open House, 6th floor, Central Embassy shopping complex, Bangkok.

The hard-back book is 205 x 280 mms and has 312 pages, with over 300 prints of old photographs and documents, spanning the life time of the prince, from 1875-1919.

To commemorate the event, I have also commissioned a bust of the prince, one full size for myself, and 10 smaller ones for a few family members and collectors, as well as his likeness hand-painted on porcelain from Nangloeng Arts using traditional methods handed down through generations, and set into a pin/brooch by Gems Pavilion. I might have possibly gone a little bit overboard on this one, but hey, he is my great-grandfather, who is pretty much forgotten by everyone including nearly all of his descendants. Thus, it's quite befitting I think. I just want to let the world know how proud I am of him.
Prince Pravitra Pin
Bust of Prince Pravitra
I must admit that it is a whole bit disappointing talking to the other family members, Prince Pravitra's direct descendants. Knowing so little about their forebear is one thing, but seemingly quite uninterested about him is what got me mad. And they want to use his name to tie into the Royal bloodlines that is so important these days. This book was supposed to be from all of us to him, though by me, so I changed it from ME to him, as it is all by me, with no input from others at all, apart from an uncle who provided some photos and a written work of our star novelist, Princess Svasti Vadhanodom, whom I credited in the book. Otherwise, zilch! What a disappointing and sad bunch! I'm sorry to air it out here, but it is my personal space afterall. Thank you for understanding.