Journal article

Lully in Siam: music and diplomacy in French-Siamese cultural exchanges, 1680-1690

David RM Irving

EARLY MUSIC | OXFORD UNIV PRESS | Published : 2012

Abstract

In the 1680s, the kingdoms of France and Siam (the name for Thailand before 1939) sent several embassies to each other. Louis XIV admired the political and social authority of his Siamese counterpart Phra Narai; the two rulers engaged in detailed diplomacy through their intermediaries, and the cross-cultural exchanges that ensued were filled with music for entertainment and ritual. When three Siamese ambassadors visited France in 1686, they met Jean-Baptiste Lully and invited him to dine with them before attending one of his operas. French envoys subsequently carried the music of French operas to Siam, where extracts were performed before Phra Narai. This article examines documentary evidenc..

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