Their Majesties the King and Queen along with Royal Family members yesterday attended a Brahmin ritual to raise a seven-tiered white umbrella to the top of the royal funeral pyre for HRH Princess Galyani Vadhana.
The ritual was in preparation for the late Princess's royal cremation scheduled from Novem-ber 14 to 19.
At about 5pm yesterday, the Royal Family arrived at the Sanam Luang ceremonial ground and Premier Somchai Wongsawat introduced Phra Rajakru Vamathepmuni, the Brahmins' head priest, who had fixed the auspicious time of 4.59pm to 5.29pm for the ritual.
HM the King anointed the umbrella before Their Majes-ties held a cord to raise the key umbrella to the pyre's peak accompanied by ceremonial music. After inspecting the pyre, Their Majesties and Royal Family members returned to the palace.
Chairman of the royal funeral pyre design committee, Group Captain Arwut Ngernchooklin, said the ritual signified the pyre's completion, with the seven-tiered white umbrella, a high honour granted by HM the King to the late Princess, now in place. Only minor details such as carpets and landscaping remained, he said.
Earlier, at 9.09am, Phra Rajakru Vamathepmuni conducted prayers to bless the royal funeral pyre and appease deities and sacred spirits. This ceremony was to mark the end of construction, express gratitude to the fine arts instructors, and help the Princess on her way to heaven, according to the head of the brahmin priests.