Buddhism and Sri Lanka

According to Sri Lankan chronicles, Buddhism was introduced to Sri Lanka in the 3rd century B.C. by Arhant Mahinda, during the reign of King Devanampiya Tissa.

Sri Lankan Inscriptions

The earliest trace of epigraphy in South Asia is said to be found in Sri Lanka. A piece of pottery, dated to circa the 4th century B.C. has been discovered from the Anuradhapura citadel.

Architecture of Sri Lanka

The architecture of Sri lanka has a long history and shows diversed forms and styles, mainly infuenced by their religions and traditional beliefs.

Sri Lankan Antiquities

Inherited from the past, Sri Lanka has a large number of antiques with cultural and historical significance which reflects the glory of past era.

Visit Sri Lanka

Located in the northern waters of the Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka is an island blessed with a large number of attractons which has made the country an ideal destination for the tourism.

Sunday, October 31, 2021

Jetavanarama Alms-Hall

Jetavanarama Alms-Hall
Jetavanarama Alms-Hall (or The Refectory of Jetavanaramaya) is a ruined building located in the ancient monastery premises of Jetavanaramaya in Anuradhapura District, Sri Lanka. It was the place where the daily alms were provided for the monks who lived in the monastery (Wikramagamage, 2004).

The building
Jetavanarama Alms-Hall
The building is smaller when it is compared to other rectories at Anuradhapura (Jayasuriya, 2016; Wikramagamage, 2004). The central courtyard of the building is paved with stone slabs and a large canoe/trough used to serve rice for monks is found within it. Stone troughs similar to this have also been found from the alms halls at Inner City, Abhayagiriya, Maha Viharaya, and Mihintale

There is a rectangular Pokkharani (pond) near the refectory building. It may have supplied water for the refectory and other needs of the monks.

Jetavanarama Alms-Hall .
References
1) Jayasuriya, E., 2016. A guide to the Cultural Triangle of Sri Lanka. Central Cultural Fund. ISBN: 978-955-613-312-7. pp.43-44.
2) Wikramagamage, C., 2004. Heritage of Rajarata: Major natural, cultural, and historic sites. Colombo. Central Bank of Sri Lanka. p.137.

Location Map
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Third Samadhi Statue and Bodhigharaya III

Third Samadhi Statue and Bodhigharaya III
Bodhi Tree Shrine III, Abhayagiriya (incorrectly referred to as the Shrine of the Diamond Throne) is a Bodhigharaya (a Bodhi tree shrine) located in the premises of Abhayagiri Monastery in Anuradhapura District, Sri Lanka. It lies to the south of the Ratnaprasadaya, the chapter house of Abhayagiri Viharaya.

History
This is considered the oldest Bodhi tree shrine of Abhayagiri Monastery and is believed to be the one that is reported in the memoir records of Fa-Hsien, the famous Chinese monk who stayed in Sri Lanka from 411 to 413 A.D. According to his report, a former king had planted the Bodhi tree at this place from a seed brought from the Sri Maha Bodhi Tree in India (Jayasuriya, 2016). The report further reveals that there was a building surrounding the Bodhi tree (Jayasuriya, 2016).

Ruins belonging to four construction phases, from the 1st century B.C. to the 10th century A.D., are found at this site (Jayasuriya, 2016). The Asana and Siri Pathul Gal indicate that this site belonged to a very early period (Jayasuriya, 2016).

The site
The ruins in this place include a large Asana (a seat/throne), Siri Pathul Gal (footprints of the Buddha), a broken Buddha statue, a pit for Bodhi tree, and two slab inscriptions of King Kassapa V (914-923 A.D.) and King Mahinda IV [(956-972 A.D.) Ranawella, 2001; Ranawella, 2004]. The main entrance to the site was located on the east and it is presently known as the Burrows Pavilion (Wikramagamage, 2004). Some inscriptions and Buddha statues discovered from this site are presently preserved in the Archaeological Museum at Anuradhapura (Wikramagamage, 2004). 
 
Burrows Pavilion (or Stone Canopy)
Burrows Pavilion
The entrance porch to the Bodhi tree shrine is presently known as the Burrows Pavillion as it was restored by S.M. Burrows.
 
Buddha statues
Besides the present statue at the site, two more Buddha statues were discovered from this site during the excavations done in 1962 (Wikramagamage, 2004). Of them, one statue received the attention of scholars as it has some primitive features of the ancient Buddha statues sculptured in Andra in India (Wikramagamage, 2004). According to the view of Wikramagamage, this statue is probably a creation of the 3rd-2nd century B.C. (Wikramagamage, 2012).
 
The two statues were later taken to the Anuradhapura Archaeological Museum for preservation, but one is said to have decayed in the museum premises (Wikramagamage, 2004). The broken Buddha statue that has been placed at the present site is a creation of a Sri Lankan artist of the Abhayagiri School (Wikramagamage, 2004).

Inscriptions
Two large slab inscriptions belonging to King Kassapa V (914-923 A.D.) and King Mahinda IV (956-972 A.D.) are found at the site. Of them, The Inscription of Kassapa V contains a set of regulations promulgated by the king concerning the administration of several monastic establishments attached to Abhayagiriya and Mihintale monasteries (Ranawella, 2001). The inscription of Mahinda IV contains an account on the religious monuments which the king had built and restored and a general survey of the charitable works he had performed (Ranawella, 2004).

Third Samadhi Statue and Bodhigharaya III .
See also
# Second Samadhi Statue and Bodhigharaya II

References
1) Jayasuriya, E., 2016. A guide to the Cultural Triangle of Sri Lanka. Central Cultural Fund. ISBN: 978-955-613-312-7. pp.27-28.
2) Ranawella, S., 2001. Inscription of Ceylon. Volume V, Part I. Department of Archaeology. ISBN: 955-9159-21-6. pp.329-336.
3) Ranawella, G.S., 2004. Inscription of Ceylon. Volume V, Part II. Department of Archaeology. ISBN: 955-9159-30-5. pp.245-252.
4) Wikramagamage, C., 2004. Heritage of Rajarata: Major natural, cultural, and historic sites. Colombo. Central Bank of Sri Lanka. pp.102-103. 
5) Wikramagamage, C., 2012. Rajarata Sanskrutika Urumaya (In Sinhala). Author publication. ISBN: 978-955-53322-2-4. pp.92-93,119-121.

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Saturday, October 30, 2021

Prasada Stupa, Abhayagiri Monastery

Prasada Stupa
Prasada Stupa is a Stupa situated in the Abhayagiri Monastery premises in Anuradhapura District, Sri Lanka. It lies to the southwest of the Abhayagiri Stupa near the Burrows Pavilion.
 
This Stupa has been built encompassing a natural rock and its architecture is similar to certain Stupas found in Thailand. Satmahal Prasada in Polonnaruwa and Nakha Vehera in Anuradhapura can be identified as two other structures in Sri Lanka that have features similar to Prasada Stupa. According to the view of Wikramagamage, this is a Stupa of Mahayana type (Wikramagamage, 2004).

Scholars have dated this Stupa to the latter part of the Anuradhapura Period. 

Prasada Stupa Prasada Stupa Prasada Stupa .
References
1) Wikramagamage, C., 2004. Heritage of Rajarata: Major natural, cultural, and historic sites. Colombo. Central Bank of Sri Lanka. p.102. 
 
Location Map
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Kappagoda Raja Maha Viharaya

Kappagoda Raja Maha Viharaya (also known as Kappagoda Brahmawardana Paya Viharaya) is a Buddhist temple situated in Kappagoda village in Kegalle District, Sri Lanka.

History
Known by the name Brahmawardhana Paya in ancient times, the history of this temple can be dated back to the period of Kurunegala of the Dambadeniya Kingdom (Abeyawardana, 2002). It is believed to be an important religious place as the locality of this temple is mentioned in the "Nampotha", an ancient Sinhalese text that lists the principal Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka during the 15th century.  
 
The temple was destroyed during the reign of King Rajasinha I (1581-1593 A.D.) of Sitawaka (Abeyawardana, 2002). However, it was restored again by Moragammana Maha Disawa during the time of King Rajasinha II [(1635-1687 A.D.) Abeyawardana, 2002].
 
Kappagoda pillar inscription
This inscription is engraved on all four sides of a stone pillar found within the temple premises (Bell, 1904). The first side of it contains 20 lines of writing and the figures of the sun and moon are found over the record (Bell, 1904). The second, third, and fourth sides contain 22, 9 and 12 lines of writing respectively (Bell, 1904).

The inscription is dated in the 13th regnal year of King Vijayabahu VI (1509-1521 A.D.) of the Kotte Kingdom (Paranavitana, 1961). The inscription on the first, second and fourth sides of the pillar have been engraved first and the record on the third side is a confirmation of the first inscription by Vijayasinha Ekanayaka Perumalu who is identical with the Ekanayaka Mudali of the Rajavaliya (Bell, 1904; Paranavitana, 1961). Ekanayaka Mudali was the one who together with Kandure Bandara conspired to keep the three sons of Vijayabahu VI (Buwanekabahu, Mayadunne and Raigam Bandara) out of the succession (Bell, 1904; Paranavitana, 1961). This conspiracy led to the famous Vijayaba Kollaya in which the three sons of Vijayabahu VI mutinied against their father and divided the kingdom among themselves (Paranavitana, 1961).

This inscription names the present temple as Kappagoda Rajamaha Viharaya. Therefore, it is evident that at the time of this record, the Kappagoda Viharaya had cast off its ancient name Brahmawardhana Paya (Bell, 1904).
 
References
1) Abeyawardana, H.A.P., 2002. Heritage of Sabaragamuwa: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Sabaragamuwa Development Bank and The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-575-077-7.  pp.73-74.
2) Bell, H.C.P., 1904. Report on the Kegalle District of the Province of Sabaragamuwa. Archaeological Survey of Ceylon: XIX-1892. Government Press, Sri Lanka. pp.86-87. 
3) Paranavitana, S., 1961. The emperor of Ceylon at the time of the arrival of the Portuguese in 1505. University of Ceylon Review (Vol. XIX, No.1). p.19.

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Friday, October 29, 2021

Omalpe Tempita Viharaya

Omalpe Tempita Viharaya (also known as Omalpe Purana Viharaya) is a Buddhist temple situated in Omalpe village in Ratnapura District, Sri Lanka.

History
The Tempita Viharaya of this temple is said to have been constructed by a chieftain named Campane Rala during the reign of King Sri Vikrama Rajasinha [(1798-1815 A.D.) Abeyawardana, 2002]. The land for the present temple has been donated by a devotee named Omalpe Pallegama Tennakoon in 1817 (Abeyawardana, 2002).

Tempita Viharaya
Tempita Viharas (the temples on pillars) were a popular aspect of many Buddhist temples during the Kandyan period. These structures were usually built on a wooden platform resting on bare stone pillars or stumps which are about 1-4 feet tall. The roof is generally made of timber and held by wooden stumps. The walls are usually made of wattle and daub and they form the main enclosed shrine room containing the Buddhist sculptures and murals belonging to the Kandyan style. Some Tempita Viharas have narrow verandas and ambulatories circulating the main enclosed space. The construction of these buildings was started in the 17th century and lasted until the end of the 19th century (Wijayawardhana, 2010).

Omalpe Tempita Viharaya
The Tempita Viharaya of Omalpe temple has been built upon 9 stone pillars about 6 feet tall. Due to the height of these pillars, the temple is seen as a two-storied building in the distance. The upper floor of this building can be accessed through a wooden flight of steps and there is an image house surrounded by a narrow ambulatory. A Digge (dancing/audience hall) or Hewisi Mandapaya (drummers’ hall) has been built towards the front of this building. 

In the image house, there is a seated Buddha statue accompanied by two images of Sariputta (left) and Moggallana (right), the two chief disciples of Gautama Buddha. The walls of this have been decorated with Buddhist murals following the Kandyan tradition (Abeyawardana, 2002). These murals can be compared to those at Walalgoda Tempita Viharaya and Maduwanwela Mudalindaramaya.

A protected site
The Omalpe Tampita Viharaya situated in Omalpe village in the Divisional Secretary’s Division of Embilipitiya is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government notification published on 22 November 2002.

References
1) Abeyawardana, H.A.P., 2002. Heritage of Sabaragamuwa: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Sabaragamuwa Development Bank and The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-575-077-7.  p.35.
2) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1264. 22 November 2002.
3) Wijayawardhana, K., 2010. Sri Lankawe Tampita Vihara (In Sinhala). Dayawansa Jayakody & Company. Colombo. ISBN: 978-955-551-752-2. p.12.

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O.M. da Silva Cosme

Oswald Murray Leon Harwood da Silva, known as O.M. da Silva Cosme (1919-2007) was a Sri Lankan Attorney-at-law and author.

Life events
Murray was born on 29 October 1919. He completed his primary and secondary education at Royal College in Colombo and had tertiary education at the University of London where he read for a degree in History (Perera, 2007). He chose the law as his profession and became a Barrister-at-law of the Middle Temple in London (Perera, 2007). He married Elyane Louise Marie Helen Groenen in 1952.

After arriving in Sri Lanka, Murray worked as an Attorney-at-law and was involved in civil, criminal, and appellate sides of the law (Perera, 2007). Later he joined the Inland Revenue Department as the first Legal Adviser to it (Perera, 2007). After his retirement, Murray went to Kenya on an assignment with the Commonwealth Secretariat where he served in the Attorney-General's chambers (Perera, 2007).

Murray passed away on 23 August 2007.

Publications
Murray is popularly known for his contribution to Portuguese studies (Perera, 2007).  

# Vikrama Bahu of Kandy: the Portuguese and the Franciscans, 1542-1551 (1967)
# Sri Lanka and the Portuguese, 1541-1557 (1986)
# Fidalgos in the Kingdom of Kotte, Sri Lanka, 1505-1656 (1990)
# Fidalgos in the Kingdom of Jafanapatam, Sri Lanka 1543 - 1658 (1994)
# Antonio Bocarro's 17th Century Sri Lanka, 1614-1617 (1998)
# Singhala Portuguese Art (2002)

References
1) Perera, C.G., 2007. Tribute—OM da Silva Cosme. Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka, pp.237-238.


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By accessing this website, we hope that you are accepting the following disclaimer notice.
The information published in this biography has been extracted from reliable sources but we, Lanka Pradeepa (lankapradeepa.com) assumes no responsibility or liability for any inaccurate or outdated content in this page.
This page was last updated on 30 October 2021
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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Kadireshan Kovil, Anuradhapura

Kadireshan Kovil, Anuradhapura
Photo credit: Google street view

Kadireshan Kovil is a Hindu shrine situated in Anuradhapura town, Sri Lanka. It is dedicated to God Siva along with other deities including Ganesa, Laksmi, Bahirava.

History
The temple was originally located at a site near Sri Maha Bodhi but it was shifted to the present location in 1961 (Wikramagamage, 2004). It was set on fire by mobs after Tamil Tiger rebels (LTTE), a militant group designated as a terrorist organization, attacked the sacred Sri Maha Bodhi in 1985 and massacred 146 people who were around the temple premises (DeVotta, 2007; Wikramagamage, 2004).

References
1) DeVotta, N., 2007. Sinhalese Buddhist nationalist ideology: Implications for politics and conflict resolution in Sri Lanka. pp.38,77.
2) Wikramagamage, C., 2004. Heritage of Rajarata: Major natural, cultural, and historic sites. Colombo. Central Bank of Sri Lanka. p.154.
.
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Mapakada Wewa

Mapakada Wewa
Photo credit: Dotcom Systems Pvt Ltd (Google street view)

Mapakada Wewa is a reservoir situated in Mapakada village in Badulla District, Sri Lanka. 

History
As an inscription found in the locality, this tank was functioning during the 9-10th centuries A.D. (Arumugam, 1969). The present tank was restored in the period of 1952-1953 (Arumugam, 1969).

The reservoir
The bund of the reservoir is about 1,900 ft. long and the water is extending in an area of about 450 acres at its full supply level (Arumugam, 1969). It has one spill and two sluices (Arumugam, 1969). 

References
1) Arumugam, S., 1969. Water resources of Ceylon: its utilisation and development. Water Resources Board. p.232.

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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Ridiyagama Wewa

Ridiyagama Wewa
Photo credit: Google street view

Ridiyagama Wewa is a reservoir situated in Ridiyagama village in Hambantota District, Sri Lanka. 

History
The construction work of this reservoir was begun in 1923 and completed in 1928 (Arumugam, 1969). It is the main reservoir built under the Walawe Ganga Left Bank Scheme (Arumugam, 1969).

The reservoir
The bund of the reservoir is about 1.5 miles long and the water is extending in an area of about 2,200 acres at its full supply level (Arumugam, 1969). It has two spills and one sluice (Arumugam, 1969). 

References
1) Arumugam, S., 1969. Water resources of Ceylon: its utilisation and development. Water Resources Board. p.116.

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Balaharuwa Wewa

Balaharuwa Wewa is a reservoir situated in Balaharuwa village in Monaragala District, Sri Lanka. 

History
The breached tank was restored in 1956 (Arumugam, 1969).

The reservoir
The bund of the reservoir is about 4,200 ft. long and the water is extending in an area of about 130 acres at its full supply level (Arumugam, 1969). It has two spills and one sluice (Arumugam, 1969). 

References
1) Arumugam, S., 1969. Water resources of Ceylon: its utilisation and development. Water Resources Board. p.125.

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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

N.A. Jayawickrama

Professor Nicholas Abeydheera Jayawickrama, known as N.A. Jayawickrama (1920-2012) was a Sri Lankan academic and Pali scholar.

Life events
Jayawickrama was born on 17 March 1920 in Kidamulla village in Hambantota District (Abeynayake, 2012). He completed his primary education at the Government School in Nakulugamuwa and secondary education at Mahinda College in Galle (Abeynayake, 2012). After that, he entered the University College Colombo and then obtained his BA Degree in Indo Aryan languages from the University of London in 1942 (Abeynayake, 2012). In 1944, he got an appointment as an Assistant Lecturer at the University of Sri Lanka and in 1947 he obtained his Ph.D. Degree from the University of London for his work Sutta Nipata (Abeynayake, 2012; Kitsudo, 1914). He served at the University of Ceylon till 1973 holding various positions (Abeynayake, 2012).
 
In 1973, Jayawickrama joined the University of Vidyalankara (present Kelaniya University) and work there until his retirement in 1985 (Abeynayake, 2012; Kitsudo, 1914). He was also a guest lecturer at the SOAS University (School of Oriental and African Studies) of London (1969-1970) and at the Churchill College of the University of Cambridge (1978-1979) and a Visiting Professor at Carleton College in Minnesota, USA  [(1970) Abeynayake, 2012; Kitsudo, 1914].

Jayawickrama has been honoured with numerous awards and titles. He was bestowed the position of Professor Emeritus twice by the University of Peradeniya in 1986 and by the University of Kelaniya in 1988  (Abeynayake, 2012). In 1990, the Buddhist and Pali University of Sri Lanka conferred in him the D.Litt Degree (Abeynayake, 2012).

Jayawickrama passed away on 21 September 2012 at the age of 92 (Abeynayake, 2012; Kitsudo, 1914).

Publications
Sacred Books of the Buddhists Series
# The inception of Discipline and Vinayanidana (translation and edition of Samanta-pasadika Nidankata, 1962)
# The Chronicle of the Thupa and the Thupavamsa (1971)
# Minor Anthologies of the Pali Canon Part IV Stories of the Mansions (1974)

Pali Text Society
# The Epochs of the Conquerer (translation of Jinakalamali, 1968)
# Buddhavamsa and Cariyapitaka (1974)
# Vimanavattu and Petavattu (1979)
# Katavatthupkarana-atthakatha (1979)
# The Story of Gotama Buddha: the Nidana-Katha of the Jatakatthakatha (1990)

Articles & others
# A Critical Analysis of the Pali Suttanipata, IIustrating its Gradual Growth (PhD Thesis, University of London, 1947)
# Pali Manuscripts of the John Rylands University Library (1972)
# Suttanipata Text and Translation with Notes (2001)
 
References
1) Abeynayake, O., 2012. Emeritus Professor NA Jayawickrama. Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka, 57(2). pp.341-342.
2) Kitsudo, M., 2014. Tribute Professor Emeritus NA Jayawickrama. Journal of Pali and Buddhist Studies, 28, pp.117-120.


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The information published in this biography has been extracted from reliable sources but we, Lanka Pradeepa (lankapradeepa.com) assumes no responsibility or liability for any inaccurate or outdated content in this page.
This page was last updated on 26 October 2021
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Mendis Rohanadeera

Professor Mendis Rohanadeera (1931-2011) was a Sri Lankan academic and historian.

Life events
Rohanadeera was born on 21 January 1931 in Pallattara village in Hambantota District (Suraweera, 2013). He completed his primary education at the Government Sinhala School in the village and then entered the Nittambuwa Guru Vidyalaya where he underwent teacher training under D.P. Atukorala from 1950 to 1951 (Suraweera, 2013). During this period, Rohanadeera was fortunate to have Mahagama Sekara as his colleague who later became a popular poet, playwright, novelist, artist and filmmaker in Sri Lanka (Suraweera, 2013).
 
After the teacher training, Rohanadeera got a job at Buddhagosha Vidyalaya at Kalubowila (Suraweera, 2013). He followed a Diploma course in Sinhala along with his colleague Mahagama Sekara at the University of Ceylon in 1956-1957 (Suraweera, 2013). After that, he got a teaching appointment at Weeraketiya Central and then at Vidyodaya University where he obtained his Masters and PhD degrees (Suraweera, 2013). With a series of promotions and honorary titles, Rohanadeera eventually became a Senior Professor of History and Archaeology (Suraweera, 2013). 

Rohanadeera has been honoured with numerous awards and titles. He was an active member of a number of organizations including the UNESCO National Commission (Suraweera, 2013). In 2009, he received a D.Litt from the University of Rajarata (Suraweera, 2013).

Rohanadeera passed away on 25 August 2011 at the age of 80 (Suraweera, 2013).
 
References
1) Suraweera, A.V., 2013. Professor Mendis Rohanadeera (1931-2011). Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka. pp.104-106.


Disclaimer
By accessing this website, we hope that you are accepting the following disclaimer notice.
The information published in this biography has been extracted from reliable sources but we, Lanka Pradeepa (lankapradeepa.com) assumes no responsibility or liability for any inaccurate or outdated content in this page.
This page was last updated on 26 October 2021
For a complete tourist map follow this link: Lankapradeepa Tourist Map

Monday, October 25, 2021

Kurunegala Lake

Kurunegala Lake
Kurunegala Wewa, popularly known as Kurunegala Lake, is a reservoir situated in Kurunegala town, Sri Lanka. Located at the verge of the Ethugala rock, it is used for recreation and sometimes as a drinking water source.

History
Kurunegala Wewa is also called by locals as Ranthaliya Wewa as there are some legends around this tank associated with Vathhimi Bandara, a prince born to a Muslim consort of King Buvanekabahu I (1272-1284 A.D.) or Vijayabahu IV [(1270-1272 A.D.) Borup et al., 2019]. 
 
The treasure & the origin of the Gale-Bandara cult
As mentioned in the legends, a treasure in the form of a golden pot began to float in the Kurunegala lake during the time of Vathhimi and his all attempts to acquire it proved futile (Borup et al., 2019). Ritual specialists (Kattadiyas) who were engaged to retrieve the treasure by Vathhimi are said to have been killed after they failed to grab this floating treasure (Borup et al., 2019). This action finally made Sinhala elites feared who thought that Vathhimi was planing a gradual annihilation of the Sinhalese starting with the Kattadiyas (Borup et al., 2019). 
 
To prevent this as well as to finish the non-Buddhist ruling, a Pirith chanting ceremony was organized on the summit of Ethugala located at the verge of the Kurunegala lake and Vathhimi was invited to it by making him believe that by participating in this event he would be able to recover the treasure floating on the lake (Borup et al., 2019). The greedy Vathhimi, without knowing anything, participated in the event as the chief guest and he was sitting on a special stand built towards the cliff of the rock (Borup et al., 2019). At the midnight, Vathhimi was pulled down the rock by a group of secret agents who had been assigned this task (Borup et al., 2019). 
 
The legends say that, following his assassination, Vathhimi was born as a demon and began to terrorize the people in the area (Borup et al., 2019). The deity Kataragama, responsible for the protection of Sri Lanka, came to meet this demon and agreed to make him a deity if he stops the violence against people (Borup et al., 2019). The demon agreed with it and after that, a shrine named Gale-Bandara Devalaya was built in his honour (Borup et al., 2019).

Attribution
 
Reference
1) Borup, J., Fibiger, M.Q. and Kühle, L. eds., 2019. Religious diversity in Asia. Brill. pp.255-256.

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Anagimala Ella Falls

Anagimala Ella Falls
Anagimala Ella Falls is a waterfall situated in Kanneliya Forest Reserve in Galle District, Sri Lanka. The Kanneliya Forest Reserve is the largest of the Kanneliya-Dediyagala-Nakiyadeniya forest complex. Regarded as one of the most biologically diverse areas in the country, this forest complex was designated as a Biosphere Reserve in 2004 by UNESCO (Gunawardena et al., 2019).
 
Climbing and bathing have been prohibited at this waterfall site by the Department of Forest Conservation.

Attribution
 
References
1) Gunawardena, M.P., Karunananda, H.T.A.R., Priyadarshana, P.H.M.G.C. and Ravindu Anjana, T.H., 2019. Plant diversity and conservation status of the Kanneliya forest reserve, Sri Lanka. International Journal of Development Research, 9(04), pp.26843-26846.
 
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Sunday, October 24, 2021

King Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha of Kandy

Degaldoruwa Viharaya
Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha was the King of Kandy Kingdom, Sri Lanka from 1781 A.D. to 1798 A.D. (Nicholas, 1963). Belonging to the Kandy Nayakkar Dynasty, he ruled the country from his capital at Kandy until he was succeeded by Sri Vikrama Rajasinha (De Silva, 2009).

Reign
The king of Kandy
Rajadhi Rajasinha ascended the Kandyan throne at the death of his childless brother Kirti Sri Rajasinha in December 1781 (De Silva, 2009).

From the Dutch to the British occupation
While the Kandyan Kingdom remained as an independent state, the trade activities of the maritime provinces of the country were under the influence of the Dutch who had occupied those areas from the Portuguese since the 17th century. The arrival of the South Indian related Nayakkar Dynasty on the Kandyan throne in 1739 was not made the Dutch happy as they were aware of the potential dangers that could come from the English East India Company that had been established in Madras (South India) by the British (De Silva, 2009). In 1762, the English East India Company sent their first diplomatic mission to Sri Lanka and the results made by this mission finally led the Kandyan rulers to develop closer ties with the British than with the Dutch.

King Rajadhi Rajasinhe's relations with the Dutch was consistently unhappy and his hatred of the Dutch was sufficiently intense for him to welcome their removal from Sri Lanka at any cost (De Silva, 2009). Therefore, he put up with British rule in the maritime provinces as it was the only means available to him of eliminating the Dutch (De Silva, 2009). In 1976, the British conquered the Dutch possessions in maritime provinces of Sri Lanka, as a result of some situations developed in Europe (De Silva, 2009).

Death
In August 1798, Rajadhi Rajasinha died of a malignant fever (De Silva, 2009). Like his predecessor, he died childlessly and this made some internal conflicts within the royal family as there was no named successor to the throne (De Silva, 2009). Pilimatalave Maha Adikaram who was the most influential person at court at the time used his power to bring an eighteen years old lad named Kannasami, the son of a sister of one of the queens-dowager, to the throne (De Silva, 2009). However, Muttusami, a brother-in-law of three of the late monarch's queens claimed himself as the successor of Rajadhi Rajasinha but he along with his sister were promptly placed in confinement by Pilimatalave (De Silva, 2009). Kannasami with the help of Pilimatalave, ascended the Kandyan throne by the name Sri Vikrama Rajasinghe (De Silva, 2009).

Services & monuments
  Inscriptions
Only one slab inscription has been found in Sri Lanka containing the name of Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha (Ranawella, 2015). However, this inscription has not been engraved in the reign of Rajadhi Rajasinha but in the 19-20th century A.D. (Dias, 1991; Ranawella, 2015).
 
1) Agrabodhi Viharaya slab inscription (from Matara District)
This inscription reveals some donations made to the temple by Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha and two other chiefs named Seneviratna Korala, Wijesinghe Mudali (Dias, 1991; Ranawella, 2015).
 
  Other documents
1) Degaldoruwa Viharaya Sannasa (from Kandy District)
This is a royal grant by Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha and it gives in detail the work done to set up the Degaldoruwa temple (Abeywardana, 2004). 
 
2) Lankatilaka Viharaya copper plates (from Kandy District)
A copper plate preserved in Lankatilaka Viharaya records some grants of lands made to the shrine at Lankatilaka in the reigns of Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha and his predecessor King Kirti Sri Rajasinha [(1747-1782 A.D.) Paranavitana, 1960]. 
 
3) Sankhapala Viharaya Tudapatha (from Ratnapura District)
A Tudapatha granted to Sankhapala temple by Sri Rajadhi Rajasinha in Saka year 1708 (1786 A.D.) reveals an offering (a land grant) made to a Buddhist monk named Karatota Dhammarama Thera (Abeyawardana, 2002).

4) Rajadhirajasinha Katikavata 
A document known as Rajadhirajasinha Katikavata contains the history of the Buddhist Church of Sri Lanka from the time of Vikramabahu (1542 A.D.) of Kandy and its final part dealing with the Rajadhirajasinha and an ecclesiastical code which he had promulgated for Buddhist monks (Mudiyanse, 1973).

Attribution
1) SL Kandy asv2020-01 img49 Degaldoruwa Temple by A.Savin is under the Free Art License 1.3
 
References
1) Abeyawardana, H.A.P., 2002. Heritage of Sabaragamuwa: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Sabaragamuwa Development Bank and The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-575-077-7.  p.32.
2) Abeywardana, H.A.P., 2004. Heritage of Kandurata: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Colombo: The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. pp.108-109.
3) De Silva, K.M (Editor in chief), 2009. History of Ceylon: Vol. III. Ministry of Higher Education. pp.6,13-16.
4) Dias, M., 1991. Epigraphical notes (Nos 1 -18). Colombo: Department of Archaeology. pp.33,35-36.
5) Mudiyanse, N., 1973. The Ecclesiastical Code of Rājādhirājasiṁha. Journal of the Sri Lanka Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, 17, pp.22-27.
6) Paranavitana, S., 1960. Lankatilaka inscriptions. University of Ceylon Review. Vol. XVIII, Nos. 1 & 2. pp.1-45.
7) Ranawella, S., 2015. Archaeological Survey of Ceylon: Inscriptions of Ceylon: Vol. IX. Department of Archaeology. ISBN: 978-955-9159-98-8. pp.63-64. 
 
This page was last updated on 31 October 2021
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A. V. Suraweera

Professor Alankaraga Victor Suraweera (1930-2014), known as A. V. Suraweera was a Sri Lankan academic, historian, literary critic and politician.

Life events
Suraweera was born on 12 October 1930 in Korasa village in Gampaha District (Arangala, 2014). He had his primary education at the Government English School in Gampaha and completed his secondary education at Royal College in Colombo (Arangala, 2014). In 1950, he entered the University of Ceylon and completed a B.A. by 1954 (Arangala, 2014). He obtained the M.A. degree in 1957 for his critical edition of the last four chapters of the Pujavaliya (Arangala, 2014). In 1964, he obtained a Ph.D. for his critical edition of Rajavaliya which was published in 1976 (Sinhala edition) and in 2000 [(English edition) Arangala, 2014]. 
 
Suraweera's career life started when he entered into school teaching in 1954 at Sri Rahula College in Katugastota and later in Ananda College in Colombo (Arangala, 2014). In 1960, he became an assistant lecturer in Sinhala at Vidyodaya University (present the University of Sri Jayawardanapura) and where he held a number of higher positions later (Arangala, 2014). In 1968, Suraweera entered the University of Lowa on a scholarship and in 1977-78 he conducted research at the University of Kent in the UK (Arangala, 2014). He studied ola leaf manuscripts and early Sri Lankan prints in 1992 while working as a visiting professor at the SOAS University (School of Oriental and African Studies) of London (Arangala, 2014). In 1994, the University of Sri Jayawardanapura conferred on him the position of Professor Emeritus and D. lit in 1997 (Arangala, 2014).

After retirement from the university, Suraweera contested the 1994 General Election and was elected as a Minister of Parliament and during this period he worked as the Deputy Minister in Cultural and Religious Affairs (Arangala, 2014). He became the Director-General of the Central Cultural Fund in 2000 and the Chairman of the National Education Commission in 2003 (Arangala, 2014). He was the Chancellor of the Rajarata University of Sri Lanka until his death on 14 January 2014 (Arangala, 2014).

Suraweera has won more than six State Literary Awards. As an honour for his contribution to Sri Lanka scholarship, the government conferred on him the national honorific title of Kalakeerthi in 1898 and Sahitya Ratna in 2008 (Arangala, 2014).

Publications
Suraweera has published five novels, four collections of short stories and a range of scholarly works.
 
Novels
# Heyyanmaruwa (1971),        # Noyan Putuni Gama Hera Da (1975),        # Atta Bindei Paya Burulen (1977)
# Sada Melesa Pura Derane (1980),          # Anduru Duralana Res (1983)

Short stories
# Katath Ma Epawela (1969),     # Pedi Diyata Bora Diya (1970),     # Goduru Loba (1973)   
# Bava Thimira (1984)

Children's books
# Velava Balamu (1982),     # Ujaru Kumari (1985),     # Kala Mediri Eli (1985),     # Suratal Sina Sila (1993)
 
Anthologies in literary studies
# Vichara Vilasaya (1957),     # Sinhala Sahityaya Sampradaya (1966)    
# Navakata Nirmanaya Ha Avabodhaya (1973),     # Samajiya Sahityaya Adyanaya (1982)    
# Sahityaya Vichara Pradipika (1991),     # Sahityaya Vichara Samhita  (1995)
 
Cultural studies
# Anuradhapura Sanskutiya (1959),     # Anuradhapura Samajaya (1964)    
# Sinhala Katikavat Ha Bhikshu Samajaya (1971),     # Lekhana Samiksa (2011)
 
Critical editions of classical texts
# Alakeshwara Yuddhaya (1965),     # Pujavaliya (1961, 1998)    
# Rajavaliya (1976),     # Tisara Sandeshaya (1991)
 
References
1) Arangala, R., 2014. Professor A.V. Suraweera. Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka, 59(1). pp.113–116.


Disclaimer
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The information published in this biography has been extracted from reliable sources but we, Lanka Pradeepa (lankapradeepa.com) assumes no responsibility or liability for any inaccurate or outdated content in this page.
This page was last updated on 24 October 2021
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Saturday, October 23, 2021

K. Jayatilaka

Dr. Kaluachchigamage Jayathilaka (1926-2011), popularly known as K. Jayatilaka was a Sri Lankan novelist, short-story writer, literary critic and book publisher.

Life events
Born on 27 June 1926 in Kannimahara village in Gampaha District, Jayatilaka is widely accepted as one of the foremost figures in the field of Sinhala literary arts in recent times (Dharmadasa, 2013). He has published nearly 60 books in addition to many articles written for journals and other collections of essays (Dharmadasa, 2013). The government of Sri Lanka has awarded him State Literary Awards for his contributions to the field of literature.

He worked as a visiting lecturer in several national universities and also gave his knowledge for the benefit of government institutes such as the National Library of Sri Lanka, the National Arts Council of Sri Lanka, and the Sinhala Literary Panel of the Department of Cultural Affairs (Dharmadasa, 2013). He was also the founder president of the Sri Lanka Book Publishers Association (Dharmadasa, 2013). In 2007, the University of Sri Jayawardanapura conferred on him the Degree of Doctor of Literature (Dharmadasa, 2013). Several years before his death, Jayatilaka donated his ancestral home in Kannimahara along with his personal library to the public (Dharmadasa, 2013). He died on 14 September 2011 at the age of 85.

Publications
Novels
# Parajithayo (The Defeated, 1960) 
# Charitha Thunak (Three Characters, 1963)
# Delovata Nethi Aya (People Who Don't Belong to This World or the Next, 1964) 
# Vajira Pabbata (1964) 
# Pitamaha (1967)
# Kalo Ayam Te (The Time has Arrived for You, 1968)
# Punchirala (1972)
# Maya Maliga (1974)
# Matu Sambandai (To Be Continued, 1975)
# Rajapakse Walawwa (1980)
# Punchiralaga Maranaya (The Death of Punchirala, 1986)

Short stories
# Katu Saha Mal (Thorns & Flowers, 1959)
# Eka Gei Avurudda (The New Year Celebrations in One House, 1971)
# Nonimi Sittama (The Unfinished Painting, 1984)

Literary criticism
# Sahitya Vichara Satahan (Notes of Literary Criticism, 1963)
# Sinhala Katha Kalave Vikashanaya (The Evolution of the Sinhala Story-telling Art, 1965)
# Nuthana Sinhala Navakathawata Sanskruthika Ha Darshanika Pasubima (The Cultural and Philosophical Background to the Modern Sinhala Novel, 1969)
# Samaja Pragatiya Ha Sahitya Gena (Concerning Social Progress and Literature 1979)
# Navakatava Ha Samajaya (The Novel and the Society, 1979)
# Sahityaya Nirmanaye Mul Potha (Premiere of Literary Creativity, 1989)
# Nuthana Sinhala Vyakaranaye Mul Potha (The Premier of Modern Sinhala Grammar, 1991)
# Sahityaya Vichara Chintavali (Musings on Literary Criticism, 1993)
# Sinhalaye Arambhaya Ha Avasanaya (The beginning and the End of Sinhala, 2003)
 
Commentaries
# Sigiri Gee Nirmana (1989),        # Mayura Sandeshaya (1990),        # Tisara Sandeshaya (1991)
# Kav Silumina (1992),                    # Parevi Sandeshaya (1997)

Philosophy
# Jataka Sahityaya Ha Vessantara (The Jataka Literarure and Vessantara, 1988)
# Vishva Sahityaya Abhashaya Ha Nirmanaya (Influence of World Literature and Creativity, 2002)
# Buddha Charitayen Buddha Charitayata (From the life of the Buddha to the Buddha's Life, 2004)
# Darshanavada Asabadin (Being Close to Philosophical Thoughts, 2005)
 
References
1) Dharmadasa, K. N. O., 2013. K. Jayatilaka (1926-2011). Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka, 58(1). pp.99–103.


Disclaimer
By accessing this website, we hope that you are accepting the following disclaimer notice.
The information published in this biography has been extracted from reliable sources but we, Lanka Pradeepa (lankapradeepa.com) assumes no responsibility or liability for any inaccurate or outdated content in this page.
This page was last updated on 23 October 2021
For a complete tourist map follow this link: Lankapradeepa Tourist Map

Thisara Sandeshaya

Thisara Sandeshaya (the Swan Message) is a Sandesha Kavya from Sri Lanka containing a message from a Buddhist monk at Devinuwara to King Parakramabahu V (1348-1359 A.D.) of Gampola (Godakumbura, 1953). Belonging to the 14th century, the poet of this work is unknown (Godakumbura, 1953). 

Besides the 14th century work, there are another two Kavyas bearing the same name. The 15th-century poem known as Hamsa Sandeshaya which ends with a prayer to Vanaratana Thera of Keragala Viharaya from an anonymous author of Royal Seat of Kotte is also called Thisara Sandeshaya (Godakumbura, 1953; Wikramasinghe, 1900). Also, the work composed by the poet Midellava Korala in 1836 is again known as Thisara Sandeshaya (Godakumbura, 1953). These three works are known by the same name because the messenger/medium they have employed in their message is a swan. 

Sandesha Kavya: In Sri Lanka, Sandesha Kavyas were written to send a message from one place to another place via a messenger such as a bird (Nanayakkara, 2019).

References
1) Godakumbura, C.E, 1953. Midellava-kōrāḷa's Tisara Sandesaya. The Journal of the Ceylon Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain & Ireland, 3(1), pp.53-67.
2) Nanayakkara, K., 2019. The importance and value of ‘Sandesha Kavya’ in Sri Lanka, International Conference on Heritage as Soft Power, Centre for Heritage Studies, University of Kelaniya Sri Lanka. p.57
3) Wikramasinghe, D. M. D. Z., 1900. Catalogue of the Sinhalese Manuscripts in the British Museum: London. p.104.

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Friday, October 22, 2021

Pathirakali Amman Temple, Trincomalee

Pathirakali Amman Temple
Pathirakali Amman Temple is a Hindu shrine situated in Trincomalee town, Sri Lanka. It is dedicated to the goddess  Bhadrakali, a form of the Goddess Kali Amman, one of the deities of the Hindu pantheon. As locals consider her as the guardian deity of the town, she is fondly referred to as Nagara Kali (Arumugam, 1991).

History
As per local beliefs, the history of this temple is associated with the Kulakoddan era of Koneswaram Temple (Arumugam, 1991). The present temple was built in 1933 and subsequently improved in 1947 by adding several structures such as Maha Mandapam  (Arumugam, 1991).

The temple
A statue of Goddess Kali Devi is found installed in the sanctum of the temple. Four shrines dedicated to Vinayakar, Subramaniyar, Nagathambiran, and Bhairavar are located in the Praharam section (Arumugam, 1991).
 
The temple is popular for its annual festival that is held for ten days in March (Arumugam, 1991). It is end with a Ther (car) festival when three Ther chariots are towed circum ambulating (Arumugam, 1991).

Attribution
1) Sri Pathrakali Amman Kovil by David Stanley is licensed under CC BY 2.0
 
References
1) Arumugam, S., 1991. More Hindu temples of Sri Lanka. London. p.61.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 22 October 2021
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Mutwal Christ Church

Christ Church, Mutwal
Christ Church is an Anglican church situated in Mutwal in Colombo, Sri Lanka. It is considered the oldest churches within the Anglican Diocese and the first Cathedral of the Anglican Church in Ceylon.

History
The church is called Gal Palliya (chuch of rock) due to its solid granite rock structure. The construction works of this structure were started with laying the cornerstone in 1852. After completing the works, the church was consecrated on 21 September 1854.

Attribution
1) IMG_2212 and IMG_2207 by Dhammika Heenpella are licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

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Thursday, October 21, 2021

Malwathu Maha Viharaya

Malwathu Maha Viharaya
Malwathu Maha Viharaya is a complex of Buddhist temples situated within Kandy city limits in Kandy District, Sri Lanka.  It is the headquarters of the Malwatta Chapter of Siyam Nikaya, one of the two Buddhist monasteries that hold the custodianship of the sacred Tooth Relic of the Buddha housed in the Temple of the Tooth. The Mahanayake Thera (the chief monk) of this temple, together with the Mahanayaka Thera of Asgiri Maha Viharaya and Diyawadana Nilame, play the role of the three custodians of the sacred Tooth Relic.
 
The Malwatta Vihara complex consists of a collection of Buddhist temples and monk residences located in close proximity to each other. They include Pohoya Malu Viharaya, Sangharaja Pirivena, Malwathu Maha Viharaya and several other temples (Abeyawardana, 2004).
 
History
Establishment
The land where this temple has been established today was originally the pleasure gardens of the Kandyan kings (Abeyawardana, 2004). In 1753, the higher ordination for six Buddhist monks was held at this premises as a result of the efforts of Welivita Sri Saranankara Thera (1698-1778 A.D.) who was supported by the then Kandyan king, Kirti Sri Rajasinghe [(1747-1782 A.D.) Abeyawardana, 2004]. At the beginning, this temple was called Dhammikarama but when the king had established it in the royal park, the temple was begun to know as Pushparama (Abeyawardana, 2004). At the time, there had been only three temples donated to Buddhist monks including the temple of Welivita Sri Saranankara Thera (Abeyawardana, 2004). 

The temples of the Vihara complex
Pohoya Malu Viharaya
(7°17'25.4"N 80°38'20.3"E)
Also known as the Uposatha Viharaya, this temple is believed to have been constructed by King Senasammata Vikramabahu (1468-1510 A.D.) or King Vira Parakramabahu (1484-1508 A.D.) of Senkadagala (Abeyawardana, 2004). The Stupa of this site, according to popular belief, contains the collarbone relic of the Buddha (Abeyawardana, 2004). King Vira Parakramabahu is credited with the construction of the Stupa  (Abeyawardana, 2004).

The two-storied Pohoya-ge of this temple is a work of King Vimaladharmasuriya II [(1687-1707 A.D.) Abeyawardana, 2004]. The upper floor of it has been converted to an image house while the ground floor is used as a Pohoya-ge (Rajapakse, 2016). The image house consists of two sections, the shrine room and the vestibule. A seated Buddha statue accompanied by four standing Buddha statues are found in the shrine room (Rajapakse, 2016). The seated Buddha statue shows artistic features of the Kandyan Period (Rajapakse, 2016).
 
Sangharaja Pirivena
(7°17'24.9"N 80°38'21.0"E)
Sangharaja Pirivena is located within the Pohoya Malu Vihara premises. Established in 1897, it gradually earned its recognition as a famous seat of religious education for the monks of the 3 main sects (Abeyawardana, 2004). In 1947, it received recognition as a government-aided educational institution and in 1959 it was linked to the Vidyodaya University (Abeyawardana, 2004).

Malwathu Maha Viharaya
(7°17'26.3"N 80°38'27.4"E)
Buddhism in Sri Lanka witnessed a serious decline by the 17th century. However, as a result of the hard efforts by Welivita Sri Saranankara Thera (1698-1778 A.D.), there was an emergence of Buddhism again in the country. As there were no monks in Sri Lanka who had received the Upasampada (the higher ordination), Saranankara Thera and King Kirti Sri Rajasinghe (1747-1782 A.D.) managed to get down monks from Siam (present Thailand) with the assistance of the then ruler of Siam, King Borommakot (1733-1758 A.D.). In 1753, the higher ordination ceremony was held in the Seemamalaka building at Malwathu Maha Viharaya by a delegation of Siamese monks headed by Upali Thera (Abeyawardana, 2004).

The annual higher ordination ceremony of the Malwatta Chapter is still held at this historic Seemamalaka building (Abeyawardana, 2004). Inside the building is a seated Buddha statue of the Kandyan art tradition. The residential quarters of the present Mahanayaka of the Malwatta Chapter is located in the Malwathu Maha Vihara premises.

A protected site
The ancient Pohoya Geya with image house belonging to the Malwatta Pohoya-malu Vihara premises situated in Kandy city in the No. 254, Malwatta Grama Niladhari Division in the Gangawata Koralaya Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government notification published on 21 October 2010.

Attribution
1) IMG_3625b by Denish C is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
 
References
1) Abeyawardana, H.A.P., 2004. Heritage of Kandurata: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Colombo: The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. pp.21-24.
2) Rajapakse, S., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Ha Smaraka: Mahanuwara Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Archaeological Department of Sri Lanka. ISBN:955-9159-34-8. pp.44-45.
3) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1677. 21 October 2010. p.1750.

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This page was last updated on 21 October 2021
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