May 2, 2019 / 10:55 AM / 3 months ago

Thai king to pay homage to ancestors ahead of coronation

Thailand's King Maha Vajiralongkorn, Queen Suthida and Princess Bajrakitiyabha leave after paying their respect at the statue of King Rama V at the Royal Plaza in Bangkok, Thailand, May 2, 2019. Pool via Reuters

BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thailand’s King Maha Vajiralongkorn will pay homage to his ancestors on Thursday as part of preparations for his elaborate coronation ceremonies this weekend.

The coronation, which takes place from Saturday to Monday, will be the first the country has seen in 69 years, since his father, the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, was crowned in 1950.

King Maha Vajiralongkorn, 66, is also known by the title of King Rama X. He became a constitutional monarch after the death of his revered father in October 2016, after 70 years on the throne.

On Thursday evening, the king will pay respects to his forefathers at statues of King Chulalongkorn, or King Rama V, a venerated 19th century modernizer, and King Rama I, who founded the Chakri dynasty in the late 18th century.

He will also make offerings to sacred spirits.

The king is expected to be accompanied by his new wife, the deputy head of his personal guard force whom he married on Wednesday.

In a surprise announcement after the wedding, General Suthida Vajiralongkorn na Ayudhya was named queen.

Reporting by Patpicha Tanakasempipat; Editing by Robert Birsel

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