Another royal wedding

Another royal wedding has been announced, this time involving a King well-known and well-liked by people here in Thailand.

Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, The 31-year-old king of Bhutan, revealed his intention to marry student Jetsun Pema in an address at the opening of parliament, local officials said. (Photo Courtesy of the Royal Office for Media of Bhutan)


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Bhutan's 31-year-old king to marry

The 31-year-old king of Bhutan, an Oxford-educated bachelor crowned in the remote Himalayan country in 2008, set up another royal wedding on Friday by announcing his engagement.

Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, who helped usher in democracy in the Buddhist nation, revealed his intention to marry student Jetsun Pema in an address at the opening of parliament, local officials said.

"The king presided over the opening of parliament this morning and during the ceremony he announced that he would be getting married in October," a secretary from the ministry of information, Dasho Kinley Dorji, told AFP.

"There will be a celebration, but His Majesty has requested that the government not make big plans and big celebrations," Dorji Wangchuk from the royal press office, told AFP by telephone from the capital Thimphu.

"It is because of the lack of resources (in Bhutan), and secondly to make the celebrations more intimate and personal," he added.

The king has known Pema, a student at a university in Thimphu, "for quite some time", he added, saying more details would be released about her in due course.

Bhutan, famed for its invention of Gross National Happiness to measure progress and its citizens' well-being, is one of the most remote and reclusive places on Earth, sandwiched between India and China.

It had no roads or currency until the 1960s, allowed television only in 1999 and continues to resist the temptation of allowing mass tourism – preferring instead to allow access to only small organised groups of well-heeled visitors.

The country changed from an absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy in 2008 when Bhutan adopted a constitution and held its first parliamentary elections.

Wangchuck, who can take multiple wives under the Bhutanese legal system, is widely revered by his subjects.

"It required an awful amount of restraint in parliament not to explode into spontaneous joy," the leader of the opposition in parliament, Tshering Tobgay, told AFP after hearing the news.

"Everybody will be overjoyed and will feel like celebrating, but it's not our custom to go into the streets and make public our emotions. This is not Bhutanese."

Tobgay described the king's fiancee as "very approachable", "very friendly" and "beautiful".

The relationship "wasn't completely public, but it wasn't obviously hidden either", he said.

The king was crowned in 2008 following the abdication of his father, who began the process of introducing democracy to the staunchly traditional and insular nation in 2001. AFP

reveal – to let something become known เปิดเผย
intention – a plan in your mind to do something ความตั้งใจ เจตนา
address – a formal speech  คำปราศรัย
local – in or related to the area that you live, or to the particular area that you are talking about  ท้องถิ่น
bachelor – a man who is not yet married โสด
crown – to put a crown on the head of a new king or queen as a sign of royal power มอบตำแหน่งสูงสุดให้, ครองตำแหน่ง
remote – far away from other cities, towns, or people ที่ห่างไกล
engagement – an agreement to marry somebody; the period during which two people are engaged  การหมั้น
usher in – to be at the start of a new period, especially when important changes or new things happen, or to cause important changes to start happening เริ่มต้น, นำเข้ามา
nation – a country considered as a group of people with the same language, culture and history, who live in a particular area under one government; all the people in a country ประเทศ, คนในประเทศ
preside – to be in charge of an official meeting, ceremony or other event เป็นประธาน ในพิธี ในที่ประชุม
ceremony – a formal public event งานพิธี
celebration – a party or special event at which you celebrate something such as a birthday or a religious holiday การฉลอง
press – newspapers and magazines, etc. สื่อมวลชน
lack of – when there is not enough of something  ขาด
capital – the most important town or city of a country, usually where the central government operates from  เมืองหลวง
resources – things such as money, workers and equipment that can be used to help achieve something ทรัพยากร
intimate – very close, friendly and personal คุ้นเคย, ใกล้ชิด, สนิทสนม
personal – your own; not belonging to or connected with anyone else  เป็นส่วนตัว
release – to allow something to be shown or known to the public or to be available for use เปิดเผย, ปล่อยข่าว
details – small facts or pieces of information relating to a situation รายละเอียด
in due course – at the right time and not before  ตามเวลาที่เหมาะสม, ทันเวลา
famed – famous; well known  ที่มีชื่อเสียง
invention – a thing or an idea that has been invented สิ่งประดิษฐ์, ความคิดในการประดิษฐ์
progress – the process of improving or developing, or of getting nearer to achieving or completing something ความก้าวหน้า
citizen – someone who has the right to live permanently in a particular country พลเมือง
well-being – the satisfactory state that someone or something should be in, that involves such things as being happy, healthy, and safe, and having enough money ภาวะที่ปราศจากโรคภัยไข้เจ็บ
reclusive – living alone and avoiding other people or countries สันโดษ
sandwich – to fit something/somebody into a very small space between two other things or people, or between two times ใส่ไปในระหว่างสองสิ่ง
currency – the system of money that a country uses เงินตรา
awful (lot) – a large amount or too much of something มากมาย
resist – to oppose or fight against someone or something ต่อต้าน
temptation – the desire to do or have something that you know is bad or wrong สิ่งล่อใจ, ,การล่อ
mass – involving large numbers (of people)  จำนวนมาก
prefer – to like or want more than anyone or anything else ชอบมากกว่า
access – the ability to enter a building or place  การเข้าสู่
well-heeled – rich; having a lot of money ร่ำรวย
absolute monarchy – a system in which a king or queen has unlimited powers  ระบอบสมบูรณาญาสิทธิราช
constitution – the set of laws and basic principles that a country in governed by รัฐธรรมนูญ
constitutional monarchy – a system in which a country is governed by a king or queen whose are limited to those given under the constitution and laws of the country ระบอบประชาธิปไตยที่มีพระมหากษัตริย์เป็นประมุข
adopt – to accept or to start using something new นำมาใช้
multiple – many หลาย
legal – relating to the law or lawyers เกี่ยวกับกฎหมาย
revered – highly respected and admired ซึ่งแสดงความเคารพนับถือ
subject – a person who has the right to belong to a particular country, especially one with a king or queen ประชากร, ผู้อยู่ภายใต้การปกครอง
restraint – the quality of behaving calmly and with control การอดกลั้น
spontaneous – happening or done in a natural, often sudden way, without any planning or without being forced ซึ่งเป็นไปตามธรรมชาติ, เป็นไปเอง, ซึ่งเกิดขึ้นเอง, โดยสัญชาตญาณ
the opposition – the elected politicians who belong to the largest party which does not form the government พรรคฝ่ายค้าน
overjoyed – extremely pleased or happy  ดีใจเหลือเกิน
custom – an accepted way of behaving or of doing things in a society or a community  ขนบธรรมเนียม
make public – to show so that everyone can see เปิดเผย,
emotion – strong feeling such as anger or love, or strong feelings in general  อารมณ์
fiancée – the woman that a man is engaged to, i.e., the woman he has promised to marry คู่หมั้นหญิง
approachable – friendly and easy to talk to; easy to understand ที่เข้าถึงได้ง่าย, ที่เป็นมิตร, ที่สนิทได้ง่าย
obviously – clearly เห็นได้ชัด, อย่างชัดแจ้ง
abdication – the process of giving up the position of being king or queen การสละราชสมบัติ
staunch – always loyal in supporting a person, organization or set of beliefs or opinions จงรักภักดี, แข็งแรง
traditional – things (buildings, clothes, music, customs, etc.) that have been part of a country or society for a long time แบบดั้งเดิม, เป็นประเพณี
insular – only interested in your own country, ideas, etc. and not in those from outside ซึ่งมีมุมมองแคบ, โดดเดี่ยว

Related search: Bhutan, Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck, , Jetsun Pema

About the author

columnist
Writer: Terry Fredrickson
Position: Education Marketing and Support Manager