Friday, November 6, 2020

Paramakanda Viharaya

Paramakanda Viharaya
Paramakanda Viharaya is a Buddhist cave temple situated in Anamaduwa in Puttalam District, Sri Lanka. The temple complex lies on a rock outcrop popularly called Paramakanda. The famous Thonigala rock inscriptions are located about 2 km distance from this temple.

As the presence of several early-Brahmi inscriptions, the history of the Paramakanda temple can be dated back to the period ranging between 3rd-century B.C.-1st century A.D. Seven such inscriptions have been copied and published in 1970 by the renowned archaeologist S. Paranavithana (Paranavitana, 1970). Among them, three inscriptions contain non-Brahmi symbols (Paranavitana, 1970).

Also, two fragmentary inscriptions belonging to the 4th, and 7th centuries A.D. have been discovered from the temple premises (Dias, 1991). Of them, the first inscription has been incised on a rock by the side of a pool and the second one has been inscribed on a rock near the Bodhi-tree (Dias, 1991).

Temple complex
The temple complex mainly comprises of two parts; the lower terrace and the upper premises. The lower terrace consists of a number of buildings and structures including the Stupa, image house, Bodhi-tree, belfry, etc. The outer wall of the image house is apparently built of wattle and plastered with clay. Sculptures and paintings belonging to the Kandyan tradition are found inside the image house. However, a new layer of painting has been added on some parts of the walls later by covering the old Kandyan era paintings.

A small image house, a Stupa, and two carved footprints of Buddha (Sri Pathula) are found at the upper temple premises. The sculptures in the image house had been destroyed recently by thieves who searched imaginary treasures inside them.
A protected site
The ancient image house with paintings, the Dagoba and two drip-ledged caves, rock inscription, residence of the Buddha Bhikkus and three drip-ledged caves abutting thereof, belonging to the Paramakanda Vihara premises situated in the Grama Niladhari Division of Paramakanda in the Divisional Secretary’s Division of Anamaduwa are archaeological protected monuments, declared by government gazette notifications published on 1 November 1996, and 8 April 2009. 

Paramakanda Viharaya Paramakanda Viharaya .
1) Dias, M., 1991. Epigraphical notes (Nos 1 -18). Colombo: Department of Archaeology. p.72.
2) Paranavitana, S., 1970. Inscriptions of Ceylon: Volume I: Early Brahmi Inscriptions. Department of Archaeology Ceylon. pp.83,100.
3) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 948. 1 November 1996.
4) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1586. 23 January 2009. p.107

Location Map
This page was last updated on 10 April 2021
For a complete tourist map follow this link: Lankapradeepa Tourist Map


Post a Comment