For the Centennial

100 Years of the Civil and Commercial Code in Thailand
managed by Shiori Tamura

Translation and Revision of the Draft

A. Digital Archives

According to the announcement of the Thammasat University Library “รายการไมโครฟิล์มที่สำนักงานคณะกรรมการกฤษฎีกามอบให้สำนักหอสมุดทำดิจิทัลไฟล์”, there are several microfilms in the library of the “Council of the State” which contain the documents written during the codification process. These digitalized Archives “The Archives of the History of Thai Codification” (280 entries) are now offered to public access on the website of Thammasat University Library.

However, it is not easy to obtain an overview over the whole archives. So, for the convenience of the investigation, a table of direct links to each particular archive is created. This file contains following 4 lists:

  1. All Archives (p.1 - 9)Table of links to archives
  2. Civil and Commercial (p.10 - 15)
  3. Civil Procedure (p.16)
  4. Penal (p.17 - 18)
  5. Criminal Procedure (p.19)

The archives regarding Civil and Commercial Code show such a wide range of variety that it is not easy to get an overview over them. For this reason, it would be reasonable to take a strategical approach to them. This is my first proposal for such a strategical approach (Stand: 24 June 2020).

B. Overview: Roll 11, 12 and 13

Among these archives, the Rolls “ม้วนที่ 11”, “ม้วนที่ 12” and “ม้วนที่ 13”contain especially important documents for the history of establishing the Civil and Commercial Code, Book I, II and III; namely there are different versions of the translation of the Draft and their revision works. Following files show the overview over thiese archives:

  • Coverpages of the Documents (Vol.66 - 74) in “ม้วนที่ 11” (PDF)
  • Coverpages of the Documents (Vol.75 - 84) in “ม้วนที่ 12” (PDF)
  • Coverpages of the Documents (Vol.85 - 92) in “ม้วนที่ 13” (PDF)
  • Contents of “ม้วนที่ 11” and “ม้วนที่ 12” (PDF)

C. Sample Pages from Roll 11 and 12

  • Vol.66: page 1, 206, 207, 460 (PDF)
    • Complete translation of Secs. 1 - 1128.
    • Secs. 1 - 387 translated by พระยามานวราชเสวี (ปลอด วิเชียร ณ สงขลา).
    • Secs. 388 - 1128 translated by พระยาเทพวิทุรพหุลศรุตบดี (บุญช่วย วณิกกุล).
  • Vol.69, page 54 and Vol.70, page 51
    • Comparison with the Draft: Secs. 124 and 125 (PDF)
    • The Corrections recorded in the peronal copy of the Draft were done during this revision work.
  • Vol.71: page 1 - 6 (PDF)
    • Rivision of Secs. 1 - 387.
    • They were divided into “บรรพ ๑” and “บรรพ ๒”.
      • “บรรพ ๑ บททั่วไป” contains Secs. 1 - 39.
      • “บรรพ ๒ พันธะธรรม” contains Secs. 40 - 387.
  • Vol.72: page 1, 2, 241 (PDF)
    • Rivision of Secs. 388 - 1128.
    • This part has still the Title “ภาค ๗ ปริเฉทะสัญญา”.
    • Comparison with the Draft: Sec. 388 (PDF)
  • Vol.73: page 1 - 8 (PDF)
    • The part of Secs. 388 - 1128 has now the title  “บรรพ ๓ ปริเฉทะสัญญา”
  • Vol.76: page 1 - 2 (PDF)
    • “บรรพ ๑ บทเบ็ดเสร็จทั่วไป” contains now also “ลักษณ ๕ บุคคลธรรมดา”, “ลักษณ ๖ บุคคลนิติสมมด” and “ลักษณ ๗ ทรัพย์” (totally 105 sections).
  • Vol.77: page 1 - 4 (PDF)
    • The sections in “บรรพ ๒ ว่าด้วยหนี้” were recounted (มาตรา ๑๐๖ ถึง ๔๕๒).
  • Vol.81: page 1 - 5 (PDF)
    • Now, Sec. 3 determines the fixed date of the implementation (วันที่ ๑ มกราคม พ.ศ. ๒๔๖๘).
  • Vol.84: page 1, 44 (PDF)
    • The sections in “บรรพ ๓ เอกเทศสัญญา” were recounted, but not completed (มาตรา ๔๕๓ - ๖๑๑).

D. Contents of Roll 13

The first version of Book III "Specific Contracts" was promulgated in January 1925 (มกราคม พ.ศ. 2467). The archives collected in “Roll 13” contain documents and records in its final stage of the drafting work from Nov. 1923 to Dec. 1924. In this sense, the documents in Roll 13 would be quite essential to trace the drafting process (alterations to the text of particular sections) from the initial draft of 1919 to the final enactment in 1925. The contents in each volume in Roll 13 are as follows:

  1. Vol.85 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-1”)
    • Period: Nov. 1923.
    • This is a Thai translation of the Draft 1919, Division 7, Title 22 – 23 (บรรพ ๓, แพนก ๒๒ – ๒๓). It is a succeeding version of the Thai translation of these parts in Vol.75 (“Roll 12-1”). Its contents (มาตรา ๑๑๒๙ ถึง ๑๒๖๔) mostly correspond to the Sects. 1129 – 1263 of the Draft 1919. However, several sections have been already improved or deleted. In this sense, this Thai translation was probably the last candidate of these parts for the final alterations by the Department of Legilative Redaction from May to Nov. 1924.
  2. Vol.86 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-2”)
    • Period: Mar. 1924.
    • This is a Thai translation of the Draft 1919, Division 7, Title 1 – 21 (บรรพ ๓, ลักษณ ๑ – ๒๑). It is a succeeding version of the Thai translation of these parts in Vol.84 (“Roll 12-10”). Its contents mostly correspond to the Sects. 388 – 1128 of the Draft 1919. However, several sections have been already improved or deleted, new ones have been added or inserted. Moreover, the section numbers have been completely recounted (มาตรา ๔๕๓ ถึง ๑๑๓๙). In this sense, this Thai translation was probably the last candidate of these parts for the final alterations by the Department of Legilative Redaction from May to Nov. 1924.
    • In regard to the final alteration by the Department of Legislative Redaction described below, ist discussion and alterations were performed in English. Therefore, there must have existed an original English version for the final candidate in Vol.86. Unfortunately, it could not be identified in the TU Digital Archives, exept for the parts Title 15 – 23 (See the following description of Vol.87).
  3. Vol.87 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-3”)
    • Period: (probably) Dec. 1924.
    • Its coverpage says “FINAL DRAFT OF THE CIVIL AND COMMERCIAL CODE BOOK III TITLE XV. TO XXI”. In fact, however, this document covers the English text for the Draft of Title 15 – 23, and the section numbers were recounted from “Sects. 903 – 1464” to “Sects. 797 – 1297”. It includes also the additionally inserted sections like Sects. “903 bis.”, “917 bis.”, “917 ter.”, “918 bis.”, “923 bis.”, “923 ter.”, “923 quart.” etc., which have been reported, for instance, in the “บันทึก ๓๐” in Vol.89 (“Roll 13-5”). This fact means that it was created at a timepoint after the creation of Vol.89 (“Roll 13-5”) and before the creation of Vol.88 (“Roll 13-4”), in other words, in Dec. 1924.
  4. Vol.88 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-4”) and Vol.47 (Archive file name: “Roll 08-5”)
    • Period: Dec. 1924.
    • These two archives contain the same text, and their content is, as the description in Vol.47 (Page 47/1) shows, “Final Draft of Book III as typewritten in Dec. 1924” (Sects. 453 – 1297 in English language).
    • In other words, this text shows the result of the final alterations to the Draft for Book III “Specific Contracts” performed by the Department of Legislative Redaction in the period from May to Nov. 1924 (See the following description of Vol.89).
    • This text contains also several additional alterations which were adopted afterwards, vor instance, Sects. 463, 467, 471, 477, 481, 504, 563 etc.
  5. Vol.89 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-5”)
    • Period: 23 พ.ค. 2467 – 25 พ.ย. 2467.
    • As already mentioned above, this document contains the records of the final alterations performed by the Department of Legislative Redaction in the period of May to Nov. 1924. There are “บันทึก ๑” ( 23 พ.ค. 2467) – “ บันทึก ๔๑” ( 25 พ.ย. 2467). They could be divided into following three parts according to the person who put the signature on the records:
      1. “บันทึก ๑ – ๙” (Page 89/1 – 89/42) and “บันทึก สำหรับมาตรา ๕๕๖ และ ๕๕๗ เพื่อขยายความในบันทึก ฉบับที่ ๙ ข้อ (๓)” (Page 89/48 – 89/51) were written by พระยามานวราชเสวี under “Signature 01”;
      2. “บันทึก ๑๐ – ๑๕” (Page 89/43 – 89/47, 89/52 – 89/75) were written by the 2nd person under “Signature 02”;
      3. The further reports “บันทึก ๑๖ – ๔๑” (Page 89/76 – 89/238) were written by the 3rd person under “Signature 03”.
  6. Vol.90 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-6”) and Vol.91 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-7”)
    1. Period: Dec. 1924.
    2. These two archives contain almost the same text, and their content is the Thai translation of the “Final Draft of Book III as typewritten in Dec. 1924” (Vol.88 “Roll 13-4”; Vol.47 “Roll 08-5”). This text was promulgated as the first version of Book III in January 1925.
  7. Vol.92 (Archive file name: “Roll 13-8”)
    • Period: 11 Feb. 1925 20 Feb. 1926.
    • This is an archive titled “MEMORANDUM OF THE BRITISH LEGATION AND OF THE LEGISLATIVE COMMITTIEE RE: CIVIL AND COMMERCIAL CODE BOOK III”.

In regard to the analysis of the contents of “Roll 13”, see the reports in Page “Research.