History in Bhutan


Stone implements indicate that the country was inhabited as early as 2000 - 1500 B.C. Although Bhutan's history since the 7th century is becoming increasingly known, its more ancient history remains to be brought to light. Bhutan has been an independent nation throughout its history. However, it was not until the 17th century that Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal (1594 - 1652) unified the country into one state, that Bhutan was brought under one rule. He established a theocracy in 1652 and gave Bhutan an administrative system, and a code of law. The theocracy established by Shabdrung ended in 1907 when Ugyen Wangchuck (1862 - 1926) was elected as the first king of Bhutan by popular consensus. Since the establishment of the monarchy in 1907, there have been four hereditary kings.

  • King Ugyen Wangchuk 1907 - 1926
  • King Jigme Wangchuk 1926 - 1952
  • King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk 1952 - 1972
  • King Jigme Singye Wangchuk 1972 - present

Bhutan was fairly isolated from the outside world until the 1960s when the third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck (1952 - 1972) opened links with other countries and initiated the development of a modern economy. His Majesty the lat King also introduced many social, legal and constitutional reforms, which have far - reaching effects