Ambareli Tempita Viharaya

Ambareli Tempita Viharaya (Sinhala: අඹරැලි ටැම්පිට විහාරය) is a Buddhist temple situated near Hinguruweawa reservoir in Anuradhapura District, Sri Lanka.

Although the history of Ambareli temple could be traced back to the 3rd century B.C., the Tempita Viharaya is a creation of the 19th century A.D. (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021). It was constructed in 1838 under the guidance of the Buddhist monk Handungama Indrajothi Thera (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021).

Tempita Viharaya
Tempita Viharas 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 started in the 17th century and lasted until the end of the 19th century (Wijayawardhana, 2010).

Ambareli Tempita Viharaya
The Tempita Viharaya of Ambareli temple is a two-storied building with a narrow ambulatory on the upper level and a broad ambulatory on the ground level (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021). The Buddha images have been placed in the Atulgeba (shrine room) balanced on eight stone pillars. A flight of steps shaded by a roof provide access to the Atulgeba

The murals inside the Tempita Viharaya are said to have been executed by the painters of the Nilagama Sittara lineage (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021).

A protected site
The Tampita Viharaya in Ambarali Viharaya, situated within the Grama Niladhari Division No. 679-Hinguruwewa in Palagala Divisional Secretary Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government Gazette notification published on 23 January 2009.

1) Silva, K.D. and Chandrasekara, D.P., 2021. The Tämpiṭavihāras of Sri Lanka: Elevated Image-Houses in Buddhist Architecture. Anthem Press. pp.92-93.
2) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1586. 23 January 2009. p.109.
3) Wijayawardhana, K., 2010. Sri Lankawe Tampita Vihara (In Sinhala). Dayawansa Jayakody & Company. Colombo. ISBN: 978-955-551-752-2. pp.12.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 30 July 2022

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