Dodanduwa Shailabimbaramaya

Not to be confused with Pitihuma Shailabimbaramaya

Dodanduwa Shailabimbaramaya
Shailabimbarama Maha Viharaya (Sinhala: දොඩංදූව ශෙෙලබිම්බාරාමය) is a Buddhist temple situated in Dodanduwa in Galle District, Sri Lanka.

The site for this temple is said to have been selected by a Buddhist monk named Dammasara Thera (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009).

In the past, this temple was known by two names; Udugalpitiya Viharaya and Degalle Viharaya (Ranchagoda, 2015). It came to be known as Shailabimbaramaya when a stone-made Buddha statue was placed in the temple on a day between 1786-1854 A.D. (Ranchagoda, 2015). That Buddha statue is said to have been brought here from Kaveripattinam in India and presently it is placed in the image house of the temple (Ranchagoda, 2015). However, the original appearance of it can not be seen due to the clay layer that was applied to the statue later (Ranchagoda, 2015). 

The temple flourished as a highly recognized institute since the early period of its establishment (Ranchagoda, 2015). Evidence is there to show that it maintained relations with the king of Burma (present Myanmar) during the 16-17 centuries A.D. (Ranchagoda, 2015). The image house of the temple is said to have been constructed during the same time period (Ranchagoda, 2015). 

The temple is famous for its murals and the architecture of the image house. The front facade of the image house is decorated with masonry mouldings depicting the British Court of Arms incorporating the lion and the unicorn and arch-shaped openings (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). The murals that are found inside the image house depict certain features characteristic of the low country style of the Kandyan Art tradition (Ranchagoda, 2015).

1) IMG_8592, IMG_8602, and IMG_8588 by Dhammika Heenpella are licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

1) De Silva, N.; Chandrasekara, D.P., 2009. Heritage Buildings of Sri Lanka. Colombo: The National Trust Sri Lanka, ISBN: 978-955-0093-01-4. pp.61,94.
2) Ranchagoda, T. O., 2015. Pauranika Sthana Ha Smaraka: Galla Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Archaeological Department of Sri Lanka. ISBN:955-9159-53-4. pp.42-43.

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This page was last updated on 24 June 2023

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