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Bangkok was likely a colloquial name, albeit one widely adopted by foreign visitors, who continued to use it to refer to the city even after the new capital's establishment.When King Rama I established his new capital on the river's eastern bank, the city inherited Ayutthaya's ceremonial name, of which there were many variants, including Krung Thep Thawarawadi Si Ayutthaya ( Edmund Roberts, visiting the city as envoy of the United States in 1833, noted that the city, since becoming capital, was known as Sia-Yut'hia, and this is the name used in international treaties of the period. The city occupies 1,568.7 square kilometres (605.7 sq mi) in the Chao Phraya River delta in Central Thailand, and has a population of over 8 million, or 12.6 percent of the country's population.Over 14 million people (22.2 percent) lived within the surrounding Bangkok Metropolitan Region at the 2010 census, making Bangkok an extreme primate city, significantly dwarfing Thailand's other urban centres in terms of importance.The reigns of Kings Mongkut (Rama IV, 1851–68) and Chulalongkorn (Rama V, 1868–1910) saw the introduction of the steam engine, printing press, rail transport and utilities infrastructure in the city, as well as formal education and healthcare.

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After the fall of Ayutthaya to the Burmese Empire in 1767, the newly declared King Taksin established his capital at the town, which became the base of the Thonburi Kingdom.It is named the world's most visited city in Master Card's Global Destination Cities Index, and was named "World's Best City" for four consecutive years by Travel Leisure magazine.Bangkok's rapid growth amidst little urban planning and regulation has resulted in a haphazard cityscape and inadequate infrastructure systems.Today, the city is known in Thai as Krung Thep Maha Nakhon (กรุงเทพมหานคร) or simply as Krung Thep (กรุงเทพฯ).Its full ceremonial name, which came into use during the reign of King Mongkut, reads as follows: Thai school children are taught the full name, although few can explain its meaning as many of the words are archaic, and known to few.It is an international hub for transport and health care, and has emerged as a regional centre for the arts, fashion and entertainment.The city is well known for its vibrant street life and cultural landmarks, as well as its notorious red-light districts.Five rapid transit lines are now in operation, with more systems under construction or planned by the national government and the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration.Because of its strategic location near the mouth of the river, the town gradually increased in importance.Limited roads, despite an extensive expressway network, together with substantial private car usage, have led to chronic and crippling traffic congestion, which caused severe air pollution in the 1990s.The city has since turned to public transport in an attempt to solve this major problem.

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