(Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons. Later Thai painting of the destruction of a city.)
Ayutthaya’s collapse was swift and unexpected. None could have predicted, on the death of King Borommakot in 1759, that just 8 years later the city would be destroyed. But a series of systemic weaknesses within the Ayutthayan regime, plus poor leadership in a time of great need, left the state vulnerable. In good times, Ayutthaya would have survived and thrived. But out of the west came an old enemy in a new guise, and thus Ayutthaya was swept from the historical stage.