July 29 has been observed as National Thai Language Day. Aware of the importance and value of the Thai language, the Government on 13 July 1999 proclaimed July 29 National Thai Language Day, as proposed by the then Ministry of University Affairs. The proposal was put forward by Chulalongkorn University, the oldest university in Thailand, with an aim to honor His Majesty the King on the occasion of his 72nd birthday anniversary in 1999.
July 29 is meaningful to those involved in the conservation of Thai language as it commemorates the day His Majesty the King paid a private visit to Chulalongkorn University to join academicians in a discussion on problems with using Thai words. The discussion took place on 29 July 1962 at the Faculty of Arts, where students and lecturers were overjoyed at having His Majesty as a panelist in the talks.
During the discussion, His Majesty urged people, educational institutions, and public and private organizations to be aware of the proper use of the Thai language. His participation in the discussion reflected his interest in the preservation of Thai cultural heritage. He also gave advice on the preservation of the language. He emphasized the importance of using correct pronunciations and local dialects. Those who want to create new words must know the language very well. To recognize His Majesty’s concern for the proper use of the Thai language, the National Thai Language Day has been observed since 1999.
The use of proper Thai language has always been encouraged as the majority of the younger generation often mix foreign words in Thai sentences. Other incorrect uses that are often found include the common use of diphthong, intonation marks and etc. The simplest way to eliminate the improper use of Thai language is that Thais should all be aware of how important it is to preserve their language and be truly rejoiced of the country’s uniqueness on the National Thai Language Day.