Image of a map of South East Asia


Siam Maritime Trade

Siam Maritime Trade in the Golden Age 1350 to 1767
The Scottish photographer John Thompson first travelled to Asia in 1862 and reached Siam, present day Thailand, in 1865. This was only some 100 years after the fall of the Kingdom of Ayutthaya in Siam, which rose to power in 1350 bringing with it ‘the age of commerce’, otherwise known as ‘The Golden Age’.

From the 14th to the 18th centuries, the Ayutthaya kings maintained diplomatic and commercial relations with most polities throughout East and South Asia, and the resulting two-way trade reached across this Maritime region from the islands of Japan to the Arabian peninsula.

This lunchtime talk is richly illustrated with period maps, ports and ships, and the luxury goods which were the objects of exchange in this ‘Golden Age’.

Free, no booking required.

Lesley Pullen is an art historian, with a focus on medieval South and Southeast Asian material cultures. She completed at SOAS University of London a Masters in 2008 and a PhD in 2017. Lesley was appointed a SOAS Post-Doctoral Research Associate in 2018. Her teaching record at SOAS includes tutoring the Southeast Asian Art module of the Postgraduate Diploma programme from 2009 to 2015. Lesley has tutored the Southeast Asian Art module on the V&A Museum Arts of Asia Year Course since 2015. She has also curated a number of short courses at both SOAS and the V&A, including in 2018 the SOAS course Maritime Silk Route: Across the Seas of Asia.

Closed today

Monday to Friday 9:45am - 5:30pm
Wednesday 9:45am - 8:00pm
Saturday 9:45am - 5:30pm
Sunday 12:00pm - 5:30pm

Closed Mondays: Nov - Feb
Closed 1 Jan; Good Friday; 24-26 Dec

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Admission is Free
Suggested donation €5


Chester Beatty
Dublin Castle
Dublin 2
D02 AD92