Tholuvila Monastery Ruins

Tholuvila Monastery
Toluvila Archaeological Reserve (Sinhala: තොළුවිල පුරාවිද්‍යා ස්ථානය) is a ruined Buddhist monastery site situated to the east of Anuradhapura Railway Station in Anuradhapura District, Sri Lanka.

Tholuwila Monastery
This site has been recognized as the place where Arhat Mahinda Thera had taken shelter on the way from Chetiya Pabbata to Maha Viharaya in the 3rd century B.C. Pubbarama may have been the original name of this monastery complex and it may have belonged to the Abhayagiri sect (Wikramagamage, 2004). A Guard Stone With An Inscription of the 9-10th century A.D. and a seated Buddha bronze of the 10th century A.D. have been found at this site (Ranawella, 2005).

The ruins
The structures at the site indicate that there was a Pabbata Vihara complex erected during the period between the 7-9th centuries A.D. The world-renowned Toluvila Buddha Statue in the Samadhi posture which is presently preserved in the Colombo National Museum was unearthed from an image house of this site in 1890. The ruins of the monastic complex are scattered over a large extent of the area and are surrounded by a moat.

Asokaramaya, Vijayarama, Puliyankulama Purvarama, and Prachina Tissa Pabbata Viharaya are several other monasteries that have features similar to the Tholuvila monastery.

Tholuvila Monastery Tholuvila Monastery Tholuvila Monastery Tholuvila Monastery
#) extends its gratitude to Lalith Kekulthotuwage for providing the necessary photographs required for this article. All the photos are published here with the permission of the author.

1) Ranawella, S. (Ed.), 2005. Sinhala inscriptions in the Colombo National Museum: Spolia Zeylanica. Vol 42. (2005). Department of National Museums, Sri Lanka. p.91.
2) Wikramagamage, C., 2004. Heritage of Rajarata: Major natural, cultural, and historic sites. Colombo. Central Bank of Sri Lanka. p.156.

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This page was last updated on 21 October 2023

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