curio. The ^roof illustrates what all roofs in Siamese style illustrate,
namely, in their gables, the garuda, mythical king of the birds, holding in the claws of each foot a snake. Sometimes this symbol is very clearly sculptured or stuccoed or designed or carved, but through a series of less elaborate gradations its rendering may eventually sink to the mere sketch of a beak, and the mere suspicion of two serpents seen as the gables of the wooden houses of the poor or the economical. But it is a design distinctively Siamese, and once the traveller is on the look-out for it many quaint instances he will discover, for the design may be elaborated out of all knowledge, and still the symbol will be there, or it may be simplified out of all knowledge, yet there it will still be.
The Royal Palacea which cannot be visited without a permita comprises within its walls a number of buildings. In the courtyard is a mounting-block in white marble, and a pavilion in gold and vermilion, and the visitor is shown a tank for ceremonial bathing of the King, with a cover in solid teak more than three metres by two. The Amarintra hall has a boat-shaped throne, and its beamed ceiling is in vermilion and gold, the Royal colours. The throne is in gold. Its nine-tier umbrella is for the King, and its seven-tier umbrella for Princes. Round the walls runs a frieze of dewa in a coerulean heavena the colours excellently contrasted.
In the palace is probably the best view of typical Siamese roofs, eaves and gables, if you stand with your back to the Opera House and look across the lawn to the Chinese door and porch
forming a centre, from which the eye roves over the mass of light and colour. The tiling of the roofs is very remarkable, green tiles with broad yellow tiled borders, yellow tiles with blue broad border, ruddy tiles and grass-green borders, or plain gilding with winking points of light of gold. Behind it all are two spires in sombre black and deep green.
In the Chapel Royal are frescoes from the time of the first Rama of the present dynasty, set in arcades, and its prachedi is in gold mosaics. The main building takes the shape of a a bot a and is encrusted with patterned mosaic. Tenderly beautiful are the porcelain panels on the walls of the ground-floor platform in Chinese flowers and brilliant birds, all against a ground in eau de nil. Some of the statuary here is from Borobodoer in Java or else is Khmer from Cambodia. The roof is hung with bells that the breeze rings and during the blowing of the southeast monsoon they sound the day long. Not one is of the same tone as any other, yet there is not a jangled note amongst them. The mortuary chapels are miracles of colour, the rather uncommon powder-blue motif effectively combining with gold and vermilion. Here colour riots, and the more it riots the more it composes. In the courtyard, close to the chapel, is a great model of Angkor Wat in Semrap, Cambodia.
In the palace, too, is the temple of the famous Emerald Buddha, so called because it is of solid dark-green jade, a curious and deeply venerated small image seated high up on a throne in a frescoed chapel with a gold and vermilion roof. The chapel is filled with offerings of the faithful, and is given over to this one Buddha, and all that is his in the way of fans and umbrellas for his processions and many changes of robe. So many Buddhas in Siam are fallen on evil times and ruinate that this image must be the subject of their envy, did Buddha ever envy. China is supposed to have first possessed the figure, and China and many another eastern nation and tribe have fought to obtain or retain it. The light which