Palace and local master artisans on Tuesday night finished the expertly hand-carved banana stalks, featuring vegetables and flowers, that will decorate the outside of the Royal Pyre – Phra Chittakathan, as it is known in Thai – and prevent the flames from spreading outwards.
Transferred from Phra Tamnak Suankularb School in the Grand Palace, Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Sirindhorn's carved works are among those being installed on top of the Royal Pyre on Wednesday morning in time for the Royal Cremation of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej on Thursday, October 26.
For more than 500 years, since the Ayutthaya era, a temporary crematorium has been constructed in the middle of the city for the funerals of deceased kings, queens and other high-ranking royals.
Its function is not just to pay the highest honours to the beloved monarch but also to preserve traditions.
The tradition of vegetable carving on the royal pyre has been preserved in this final tribute.