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.

Monday, 31 October 2022

Koch Memorial Clock Tower

Koch Memorial Clock Tower
The Koch Memorial Clock Tower (Sinhala: කොක් අනුස්මරණ ඔරලෝසු කණුව; Tamil: கோச் நினைவு மணிக்கூட்டுக் கோபுரம்) is located on Kynsey Road next to the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka.

History
The clock tower was built in memory of Dr. Edwin Lawson Koch (1838-1877) who was a renowned physician and the second principal of the Colombo Medical College. He died in 1877, at the age of 39, after being infected by a scratch sustained while conducting an autopsy. His friends started the construction work of the tower and completed it in 1881 with the support received from the government (Manathunga, 2016). The English inscription on the tower can be read as follows;
In memory of E. L. Koch, M.D. Principal Medical College. Erected by Public Subscription and Civil Medical Officers 1881
Attribution
1) Colombo Medical College UoC by Cossde is licensed under the CC BY-SA 3.0
  
References
1) Manathunga, S. B., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Saha Smaraka: Kolamba Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 955-9159-39-9. p.57.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 31 October 2022

Sunday, 30 October 2022

Kandy Clock Tower

Kandy Clock Tower
The Kandy Clock Tower (Sinhala: මහනුවර ඔරලෝසු කණුව; Tamil: கண்டி மணிக்கூட்டுக் கோபுரம்) is located in the middle of Kandy town, Sri Lanka.

History
The clock tower was built in 1950 by Haji Mohamed Ismail as a monument in memory of his son Mohamed Zacky Ismail, who lost his life in an accident in Kadugannawa in 1947. The English inscription on the tower can be read as follows;
This clock tower is the gift of Haji Mohamed Ismail to the town of Kandy in memory of his beloved son Mohamed Zacky Ismail who lost his life at Kadugannawa on 14th August 1947
Designed by Shirley de Alwis, the completed tower was declared open by the then Prime Minister, D. S. Senanayake (1947-1952) and the Kandy Mayor.

Attribution
1) Kandy clock tower, 1950 by AntanO is licensed under the CC BY-SA 4.0

Location Map
This page was last updated on 30 October 2022

Saturday, 29 October 2022

Ratnapura Old Fountain

Ratnapura Old Fountain (Sinhala: රත්නපුර පැරණි වතුර මල) is a water spout located in the premises of Maha Saman Devalaya in Ratnapura District, Sri Lanka.

History
The fountain was granted by Sir William Gregory, the British Governor of Ceylon from 1872 to 1877 as a souvenir to commemorate his visit to Ratnapura. The fountain was installed in the main roundabout in front of the entrance gate of the Ratnapura Fort near the present public library building. In 1967, to obtain space for the road, the fountain was removed from the site and established in front of the statue of Henpitagedara Gnanaseeha Thera near the Moragahayata bridge. However, it was removed again from that site and kept in a store belonging to the Road Development Authority.

On 2 August 2022, the fountain was reconstructed and installed in front of the Maha Saman Devalaya premises under the direction of the Department of Archaeology.

See also

Location Map
This page was last updated on 2 November 2022

Friday, 28 October 2022

Ratnapura Clock Tower

Ratnapura Clock Tower
The Ratnapura Clock Tower (Sinhala: රත්නපුර ඔරලෝසු කණුව) is located in the middle of Ratnapura town, Sri Lanka.

History
The clock tower was erected on 17 March 1922 to commemorate 93 British nationals who died in the First (1914-1918), representing the Ratnapura District. The English inscription on the tower can be read as follows;
This tower was erected by public subscription in memory of the men from this district who laid down their lives in the Great War 1914-1918 and whose names are recorded thereon
As mentioned on one of the gears, the clock has been manufactured in 1921 by J.W. Benson & Co. in London.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 28 October 2022

Thursday, 27 October 2022

Kurunegala Clock Tower

Kurunegala Clock Tower
The Kurunegala Clock Tower (Sinhala: කුරුණෑගල ඔරලෝසු කණුව; Tamil: குருணாகல் மணிக்கூட்டுக் கோபுரம்) is located in the middle of Kurunegala town, Sri Lanka.

History
The clock tower was built in 1922 to remember those who died in the First (1914-1918) and the Second World Wars (1939–1945). The English, Sinhala and Tamil inscriptions on the tower can be read as follows;
This clock tower was erected in memory of those who went from the North Western province at the call of duty and gave their lives for the empire in the World War in 1914–1918
ක්‍රි.ව. 1914 - 1918 මහ යුද්ධයේදී අධිරාජ්‍ය උදෙසා වයඹ පළාත වෙනුවෙන් ගොස් ජීවිත දානය කළ වීර පුරුෂයන් සිහිවීම පිණිසයි
கிபி 1914-1918 ம் ஆண்டு உலக மகாயுத்தத்தின் போது ஏகாதிபத்தியத்தை எதிர்த்து வடமோ மகாணத்தின் சார்பாக போர்க்களத்தில் உயிர்த்யாகங்களபுரிந்த மகா விர புருசாத்மாக்களின் ஞாபகார்த்தமாக
The tower
The tower which is made almost entirely of cement and granite is square in shape. At the lower part of the tower are four gates facing four directions and three of them are used to indicate the intention of construction of the clock tower and the names of the soldiers who died in World War I and II. Inside the clock tower is a staircase built for its ascent, of which 4 steps are made of concrete while the remaining are made of wood.

Attribution
1) Clock Tower (Kurunegala) by AntanO is licensed under the CC BY-SA 4.0

Location Map
This page was last updated on 5 November 2022

Wednesday, 26 October 2022

Sri Lanka Thriposha Program

The Thriposha Program (Sinhala: ශ්‍රී ලංකා ත්‍රිපෝෂ වැඩසටහන) is the first comprehensive island-wide nutrition supplementary food program carried out by the Government of Sri Lanka (Jayatissa, 2005). The distributed food item through this program is Thriposha (which means triple nutrient) and it is a pre-cooked cereal and legume-based food containing maize (66%), soya (30%), full cream milk powder (3%) and vitamin (0.1%) and minerals [(0.9%) Jayatissa, 2005; Tharaka et al., 2014]. The manufacturing plant of Thriposha is located at Kapuwatta in Ja-Ela.

History
The program was initiated by the government in 1973 with the assistance of the CARE organization, a U.S. private voluntary organization (Hornstein, 1986; Jayatissa, 2005). Support for the program was also provided by USAID, United States Agency for International Development (Hornstein, 1986). Initially, the prepared food was imported from the USA and distributed in the country. In 1976, the program was undertaken by the Ministry of Health with the financial assistance of CARE and thereafter, its management was handed over to the Ceylon Tobacco Company to maintain as a private company.

The company was taken over by the Ministry of Health as a fully government-owned company in the name of Sri Lanka Thriposha Ltd., with effect from 17-09-2010 under the Companies Act no. 07 of 2007 and under registration no. PB/3873.

Purpose
The purpose of the Thriposha program was to provide an energy and reference protein dense, with all required micro-nutrients, as a supplement to the most nutritionally vulnerable segments of the population such as pregnant and lactating women and children from 6 to 59 months of age (Jayatissa, 2005). It is distributed free of charge by the government Tharaka et al., 2014).

References
1) Hornstein, I., 1986. Thriposha product and program. Food Technology Branch, Office of International Cooperation and Development, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture. p.1.
2) Jayatissa, R., 2005. National Nutrition Thriposha Intervention Programme to combat malnutrition in Mothers and Children of Sri Lanka. pp.1-20.
3) Tharaka, H.M.D., Ratnayake, R.M.U., Senevirathna, R.M.I.S.K., Ranadheera, C.S. and Jayawardana, N.W.I.A., 2014. Determination of Nutrient Levels and Antioxidant Content of Thriposha and A Similar Market Product. p.44.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 26 October 2022

Tuesday, 25 October 2022

Tangalle Fort

Tangalle Fort (Sinhala: තංගල්ල බලකොටුව; Tamil: தங்காலைக் கோட்டை) is a small Dutch fort situated near the Christ Church in Tangalle in Hambantota District, Sri Lanka.

History
The fort was built by the Dutch on the site of an earlier fort erected by the Portuguese (Abeyawardana, 2004). It was heavily modified by the British in the middle of the 19th century when it was converted into a prison.

The fort
The fort which is rectangular in shape (110 x 90 ft.)  has been constructed on an elevated site to have a panoramic view of the sea and the land (Abeyawardana, 2004). The walls are 3 ft. 6 inches thick and built of coral stones (Abeyawardana, 2004). It consists of two bastions.

References
1) Abeyawardana, H.A.P., 2004. Heritage of Ruhuna: Major natural, cultural and historic sites. Colombo: The Central Bank of Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-575-073-4. p.97.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 25 October 2022

Monday, 24 October 2022

Macan Marker (Colombo Fort)

Macan Marker
The Macan Marker Building is located at No. 33 on Sir Baron Jayatilaka Mawatha in Colombo Fort, Sri Lanka.

The building is believed to have been built at the beginning of the 20th century and was one of the properties developed by the well-known wealthy merchant family, Macan Marker (Welandawe & Weerasinghe, 2016). They were also instrumental in several prime real estate developments in Colombo including the Galle Face Court 1 and Galle Face Court 2 which had been one of the first multistory buildings in the city (Welandawe & Weerasinghe, 2016).

Attribution
1) LK-colombo-yorkstreet-1 by Balou46 is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

References
1) Welandawe, H., Weerasinghe, J., 2016. Urban Heritage in the Western Region Megapolis Planning Project. p.30.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 24 October 2022

Sunday, 23 October 2022

Wales Park

Wales Park
The Royal Palace Park, also known as Wales Park or Wace Park (Sinhala: වේල්ස් උද්‍යානය), is a small urban and recreational park situated on a top of a hill southwest of Kirimuhuda in Kandy City, Sri Lanka. 

The hill where the park is situated was known in British times (1815-1948) as Castle Hill due to the belief that it was the site of a palace built for Konappu Bandara who reigned in Kandy by the name King Vimaladharmasuriya I [(1591-1604 A.D.) Briggs, 2018]. Later, a lakeside terrace was built there by King Sri Vikrama Rajasinha (1798-1815 A.D.), the last king of Sri Lanka (Briggs, 2018). It was remodelled and converted into a park in 1880 under the acting Colonial Secretary Herbert Wace (1851-1906) and opened in 1905 (Briggs, 2018; Denham, 1912).

The park extends into an area of 2 ha (4.9 acres). Presently, a Japanese artillery gun captured in Burma (present Myanmar) during World War II (1939-1945) is preserved in a small shelter on the park premises (Briggs, 2018).

Wales Park Wales Park
.
Attribution

References
1) Briggs, P., 2018. Sri Lanka. Bradt Travel Guides. ISBN: 9781784770570. pp.394-395.
2) Denham, E.B., 1912. Ceylon at the Census of 1911. HC Cottle, government printer, Ceylon. p.55.
3) Karunaratna, N., 1999. Kandy, Past and Present, 1474-1998 A.D. Central Cultural Fund, Ministry of Religious and Cultural Affairs. p.44.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 24 October 2022

Dombagammana Ambalama

Dombagammana Ambalama
Dombagammana Ambalama (Photo credit: Google Street View)

Dombagammana Ambalama (Sinhala: පූජාපිටිය දොඹගම්මන අම්බලම) is an old wayside rest situated in Kirioruwa in Badulla District, Sri Lanka. 

Ambalama
Ambalamas are traditional resting places built by locals to accommodate wayfarers who were travelling to distant places. They were also used as a place for people to gather, hold meetings and serve as a public place in society. During the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Ambalamas were spread all over the country. The Ambalama at Dombagammana is believed to be one such place.

The structure
The square-shaped Dombagammana Ambalama is relatively small and consists of a single open space surrounded by a short wall. The four-sided roof which is held by four pillars at the corners has been tiled with calicut clay tiles.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 23 October 2022

Saturday, 22 October 2022

The Kandy House (Amunugama Walawwa)

Amunugama Walawwa
The Kandy House, also known as Amunugama Walawwa (Sinhala: අමුණුගම වලව්ව), is a star-class boutique hotel located Gunnepana in Kandy District, Sri Lanka. The hotel has been established in an old manor house belonging to the Kandyan Period. It is believed that this house was built in 1804 by a minister of the last king of the Kandyan Kingdom.

Amunugama Walawwa
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Attribution
1) The Kandy House courtyard by Andrew Hall is licensed under the CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
2) The Kandy House swimming pool by Andrew Hall is licensed under the CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Location Map
This page was last updated on 22 October 2022

Friday, 21 October 2022

Sri Lanka National Flag

Sri Lanka National Flag
The National Flag of Sri Lanka (Sinhala: ශ්‍රී ලංකාවේ ජාතික කොඩිය; Tamil: இலங்கையின் தேசியக்கொடி) was first adopted officially on 2 March 1951 and slightly amended on 22 May 1972. It consists of a golden lion holding a Kastane Sword in a maroon background with two vertical stripes in teal and orange. The flag is incorporated in Section 6 Second Schedule of the Constitution of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka of September 9, 1978 (GID, 1994).

History
Although Sri Lanka gained independence on 4 February 1948, the necessity to have a National Flag for the country had been previously discussed. On 16 January 1948, a motion was tabled in the State Council by A. Sinnalebbe, an MP for Batticaloa suggesting that the Lion Flag of Sri Vikrama Rajasinhe (1798-1815 A.D.), the last King of Sri Lanka which was taken to Britain in 1815 should be made the country's National Flag (GID, 1994). This issue was debated until Prime Minister D.S. Senanayaka (1947-1952) formed an advisory committee for the formation of a National Flag. The members of this committee included S.W.R.D. Bandaranayake (Chairman), Sir John Kotalawala, J.R. Jayawardana, T.B. Jayah, L.A. Rajapakse, G.G. Ponnambalam and S. Nadesan (GID, 1994).

The committee had not reached a final decision when the first independence day was celebrated on 4 February 1948 but on the occasion, a Lion Flag was raised (GID, 1994). This Lion Flag was unfurled at the Pattirippuwa of Dalada Maligawa during the independence celebrations held on 12 February at Kandy (GID, 1994). The same flag along with the British Union Jack was also fluttered at the opening ceremony of the first parliament of independent Sri Lanka on 19 February 1948 (GID, 1994).

On 2 March 1951, the National Flag recommended by the committee was presented to the parliament by D.S. Senanayake and adopted (GID, 1994). However, the traditional Bo-leave designs that are depicted in the flag were replaced by natural Bo-leaves when Sri Lanka became a republic in 1972 (GID, 1994). This amended flag was first unfurled at the Republic Day celebration held on 22 May 1972 (GID, 1994).

Symbolism
The National Flag of Sri Lanka consists of a golden lion holding a Kastane sword in its right forepaw in a maroon background with four gold natural Bo-leaves, one in each corner. This is bordered by a gold border and to its left are two vertical stripes of equal size in teal and orange, with the orange stripe closest to the lion. 

Each element of the flag has a specific meaning. The lion and the maroon background represent the Sinhala people, while the four Bo-leaves represent concepts of Mettā, Karuṇā, Muditā and Upekshā (kindness, compassion, equanimity and happiness) respectively. The curly hair on the lion's head represents religious observance, wisdom and meditation and the eight hairs on the lion's tail symbolize the Noble Eightfold Path. The beard of the lion is to denote the purity of words while the nose is to represent intelligence. The two front paws of the lion represent purity in handling wealth and the handle of the sword represents the elements of water, fire, air and earth. The orange strip symbolizes Tamil people while the teal strip represents Muslim people. The yellow border represents all the other minority communities and the unity among all ethnicities.

References
1) GID, 1994. Sri Lanka. Overseas Publicity Division. Government Information Department.
 
This page was last updated on 21 October 2022

Thursday, 20 October 2022

Kirioruwa Ambalama

Kirioruwa Ambalama (Sinhala: කිරිඔරුව අම්බලම) is an old wayside rest situated in Kirioruwa in Badulla District, Sri Lanka. 

Ambalama
Ambalamas are traditional resting places built by locals to accommodate wayfarers who were travelling to distant places. They were also used as a place for people to gather, hold meetings and serve as a public place in society. During the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Ambalamas were spread all over the country.  

The Ambalama at Kirioruwa is one such place that is believed to have existed since the medieval period. It was part of the ancient transport system in Uva.

The structure
The square-shaped Ketawala Ambalama is relatively small and consists of a single open space. The four-sided roof which is held by four pillars at the corners has been tiled with semi-cylindrical clay tiles (Sinhala Ulu).

A protected monument
The Kirioruwa resting place (Ambalama) situated in the Village of Amunudowa in the Divisional Secretary’s Division of Bandarawela is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government notification published on 23 January 2009.

References
1) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1586. 23 January 2009. p.105.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 20 October 2022

Wednesday, 19 October 2022

Uduwaka Ambalama (Matara)

Matara Uduwaka Ambalama
Matara Uduwaka Ambalama (Photo credit: Google Street View)

Uduwaka Ambalama (Sinhala: මාතර උඩුවක අම්බලම) is a wayside rest located on Uduwaka-Telijjawila Rd in Matara District, Sri Lanka.

History
Ambalamas are traditional resting places built by locals to accommodate wayfarers who were travelling to distant places. They were also used as a place for people to gather, hold meetings and serve as a public place in society. During the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Ambalamas were spread all over the country.

The structure
The Uduwaka Ambalama is a rectangular-shaped single-room structure built of brick and mortar. Three sides of the building are covered by walls while the front side is open to the road. The roof which is covered with calicut clay tiles is held by high walls.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 19 October 2022

Tuesday, 18 October 2022

Wahalkada Wewa

Wahalkada Wewa (Sinhala: වාහල්කඩ වැව) is a shallow reservoir situated in Anuradhapura District, Sri Lanka.

History
The tank is believed to have been built during the time of King Mahasen [(276-301 A.D.) IUCN & CEA, 2006]. It was restored in 1973 by the Irrigation Department (IUCN & CEA, 2006).

The reservoir
The reservoir is situated in the northeastern dry zone in the Yan Oya basin and a tributary of the Yan Oya brings water to it (IUCN & CEA, 2006). The water extends in an area of about 2,883 ha at its full supply level (IUCN & CEA, 2006).

References
1) IUCN & CEA, 2006. National Wetland Directory of Sri Lanka. IUCN Sri Lanka and the Central Environmental Authority. Colombo, Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-8177-54-7. pp.302-303.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 18 October 2022

Monday, 17 October 2022

Pottuvil Lagoon

Pottuvil Lagoon
Pottuvil Lagoon (Sinhala: පොතුවිල් කලපුව) is a shallow brackish water coastal lagoon located in Ampara District, Sri Lanka.

Physical, ecological features & climate
Surrounded by sand dunes, salt marshes, mangroves and coconut plantations, the lagoon is connected to the sea on its eastern side via a narrow channel (IUCN & CEA, 2006). The maximum depth of the lagoon is 2-3 m (IUCN & CEA, 2006).

The lagoon is located in the low country dry zone and it experiences a rainy season (October-February) and a dry period (May and September) per year (IUCN & CEA, 2006). The average annual rainfall is 700-1,700 mm and the temperature is uniform at around 27.4 ℃ (IUCN & CEA, 2006).

Attribution
1) Fishermen 2 by Milhan Meerasahib is licensed under the CC BY-SA 4.0

References
1) IUCN & CEA, 2006. National Wetland Directory of Sri Lanka. IUCN Sri Lanka and the Central Environmental Authority. Colombo, Sri Lanka. ISBN: 955-8177-54-7. pp.238-240.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 5 November 2022

Sunday, 16 October 2022

Maniumpathy Hotel

Maniumpathy Hotel is a star-class boutique hotel located in Cinnamon Gardens near Borella in Colombo District, Sri Lanka.

History
Constructed in 1868, the ownership of the Maniumpathy bungalow was transferred to a Sri Lankan family from its original Dutch owners (Tennakoon, 2018). The building went through renovations and additions in 1906, 1920 and again in the 1950s and 1960s (Tennakoon, 2018). In the 1970s, as required by the socialist government, the land of the mansion was segmented and sold (Tennakoon, 2018). The building was refurbished and transformed into a hotel between 2010-2016 (Tennakoon, 2018).

The entire bungalow reflects the Victorian architecture and British influence with elements of Jaffna culture (Tennakoon, 2018).

References
1) Tennakoon, P.M., 2018. Dwelling on the colonial dichotomy: comparison of elite colonial dwellings in Colombo, Sri Lanka and Brisbane, Australia. A thesis submitted for the degree of Master of Philosophy at The University of Queensland, School of Architecture. pp.71-78.

Location Map
This page was last updated on 16 October 2022

Saturday, 15 October 2022

Etakada Tamil Inscription

The Etakada Tamil Pillar Inscription is one of the Tamil Inscriptions in Sri Lanka.

Discovery
The pillar containing the inscription was discovered at the entrance to the modern Buddhist Viharaya at Etakada in the Kadawath Korale in Anuradhapura District (Veluppillai, 1971). However, as per the content of the inscription, the pillar must have been originally sited on the premises of a Siva temple (Veluppillai, 1971).

Content
The text of the inscription was published in the fourth volume of the South Indian Inscriptions under the number and name; 1411: Pillar slab at Etakada in Kalpe Korale (Sastri, 1923).

The inscription begins by mentioning the 28th prosperous year but does not contain the name of any ruler in the preserved portion of the pillar (Veluppillai, 1971). Uttama Cola Isvaram, the name of the Hindu temple that is mentioned in the record suggests that it was a Siva temple related to the South Indian Chola ruler Uttama (971-985 A.D.) who preceded King Rajaraja the Great [(985-1014 A.D.) on the Chola throne (Veluppillai, 1971). It is supposed that this temple have been named after King Uttama during the reign of Rajaraja the Great (Veluppillai, 1971). Scholars have dated this inscription to the 11th or 12th century A.D. (Veluppillai, 1971).

The script of the record is Tamil while a few Grantha script is also used (Veluppillai, 1971). The object of the inscription is to record the endowment (three Velis of land, twenty cows for a perpetual lamp and fifty coconut trees and for five canti vilakku) made to the Siva temple by a person named Arankan Ramesan (Veluppillai, 1971).

References
1) Sastri, R.B.H.K., 1923. South Indian Inscriptions (Texts). Vol.4. Central Archaeological Library, New Delhi. p.495.
2) Veluppillai, A., 1971. Ceylon Tamil Inscriptions: Part 1. Published by the author. pp.20-23.

Location Map (approximate)
This page was last updated on 15 October 2022

Tintagel Hotel (Rosmead Walawwa)

Tintagel Hotel Colombo
Tintagel Hotel, formerly known as Rosmead Walawwa, is a star-class boutique hotel located in Cinnamon Gardens in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

History
The Tintagel mansion was constructed in 1929 by Dr Lucian de Zilwa following a design by Homi Billimoria (1901-1956), an architect of Parsee origin (Tennakoon, 2018). During World War II (1939-1945), the mansion was occupied by the British military and after that, Zilwa decided to sell it due to financial reasons (Tennakoon, 2018). Sir Solomon Dias Bandaranaike (1862-1946) purchased the property for his son S.W.R.D. Bandaranayake (1899-1959), the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka from 1956 to 1959 and his wife, Sirimavo Bandaranayake [(1916-2000) Tennakoon, 2018]. Sirimavo became the world's first female prime minister in 1960 and the longest-serving prime minister of the country after the murder of her husband, S.W.R.D, Bandaranayake on the verandah of this mansion on 26 September 1959 (Tennakoon, 2018). The Tintagel was also the childhood home of Sirimavo's younger daughter Chandrika Kumaratunga, the first female President of Sri Lanka (Tennakoon, 2018).

In the 1960s, the mansion was used by the ambassadors of Burma and Egypt (Tennakoon, 2018). Sirimavo resided at this mansion until her demise in 2000. In 2005, the property was leased out by its last occupant, Sunethra Bandaranayake, the elder daughter of Sirimavo, to the owner of Paradise Road to convert it into a private boutique hotel, comprising 10 individually designed suites (Tennakoon, 2018). Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall stayed at this hotel during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Colombo in November 2013.

Tintagel Hotel, Colombo
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Attribution
1) Tintagel Hotel, Colombo by Andrew Hall is licensed under the CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

References
1) Tennakoon, P.M., 2018. Dwelling on the colonial dichotomy: comparison of elite colonial dwellings in Colombo, Sri Lanka and Brisbane, Australia. A thesis submitted for the degree of Master of Philosophy at The University of Queensland, School of Architecture. pp.78-84.

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This page was last updated on 15 October 2022

Friday, 14 October 2022

Monica Ruwanpathirana

Monica Ruwanpathirana (1946-2004) was a Sri Lankan poet and short story writer (Gunawardena, 2003). She is considered one of the most prominent modern Sinhala poets in the country.

Life events
Monica was born in 1946 in Matara District. She completed her primary and secondary education at St Thomas' Girls High School in Matara and Sanghamitta Vidyalaya in Galle. She passed out from the University of Colombo in 1967 and then worked in the Plan Implementation Ministry for eleven years. After that, she worked as a Development Officer and then as a social worker attached to Konrad-Adenaur Stiftung, an NGO.

Monica died on 10 July 2004 at the age of 58.

Publications
Poems
Api Denna Saha Thawath Keepa Denek (Both of Us and some others: 1971)
Thahanam Deshayakin (From a Forbidden Land: 1972)
# Angulimalage Sihina (The Dreams of Angulimala: 1974)
# Oba Yeheliya Eya Geheniya (Your Friend-She is the Woman: 1975)
# Athuru Mithuru (1981)
# Age Lokaya (1985)
# Vivi Vasaka Shetra Patraya (1994)
Asan Pattini Dewathavi (Goddess Pattini, Listen to me: 1999)
# Hippocrates Saha Roginiya (The Woman Patient and Hippocrates: 2002)
Aluthma Sihinaya (2003)
Du Kumari (2005)

Of the poems, Asan Pattini Dewathavi won the State award for best poetic work for the year 2002 and Hippocrates Saha Roginiya won the same award for the year 2003.

Short stories
# Kusumalathage Davasak (A Day in the Life of Kusumalatha, 1990)

Critical essays
# Nava Kavi Vimasuma

Awards
#  2005 Kala Keerthi National Honour (Posthumous)
 
References
1) Gunawardena, C.A., 2003. Encyclopedia of Sri Lanka. Sterling Publishers Pvt Ltd. ISBN: 81-207-2536-0. p.257.


Disclaimer
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The information published in this biography has been extracted from reliable sources but we, Lanka Pradeepa (lankapradeepa.com) assume no responsibility or liability for any inaccurate or outdated content on this page.
This page was last updated on 14 October 2022

Thursday, 13 October 2022

Wesley College, Colombo

Wesley College (Sinhala: කොළඹ වෙස්ලි විද්‍යාලය; Tamil: உவெசுலி கல்லூரி, கொழும்பு) is a semi-government boys' school situated in Welikada in Colombo District, Sri Lanka. It is named after John Wesley (1703-1791), the founder of the Methodist Church.

History
The school was established for boys on 2 March 1874 in Pettah by Rev. Daniel Henry Pereira (Gunawardena, 2003). Pereira became its first Vice Principal during the Principalship of Rev. Samuel Rowse Wilkin. It is said that the classes were conducted on the verandahs of the Old Methodist Church.

The school was moved to the present site near Borella in 1907 (Gunawardena, 2003).

Facilities
At present, the school has common facilities such as classrooms, laboratories, libraries, a playground etc. Classes are conducted for boys students from grade 1 to grade 13. 

References
1) Gunawardena, C.A., 2003. Encyclopedia of Sri Lanka. Sterling Publishers Pvt Ltd. ISBN: 81-207-2536-0. p.307.

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This page was last updated on 13 October 2022

Wednesday, 12 October 2022

St. Andrew's Scots Kirk, Kollupitiya

St. Andrew's Scots Kirk
St. Andrew's Scots Kirk is a church in Kollupitiya in Colombo District, Sri Lanka.

History
The church was established during the British colonial period (1815-1948) by the Scottish community as a place of worship for Presbyterian devotees (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009). The foundation stone for the church building was laid in August 1906 by Governor Blake and the completed church was opened in November 1907 by Manse (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009).

The church building
The church is built in the Gothic perpendicular style (De Silva & Chandrasekara, 2009).

Attribution

References
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.  p.119.

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This page was last updated on 12 October 2022

Tuesday, 11 October 2022

Christian Reformed Church (Bambalapitiya)

Bambalapitiya Christian Reformed Church
Bambalapitiya Christian Reformed Church (Photo credit: Google Street View)

Christian Reformed Church (Sinhala: ක්‍රිස්තියානි රෙපරමාදු දේවස්ථානය), formerly known as Dutch Reformed Church, is a church located in Bambalapitiya in Colombo District, Sri Lanka.

History
The present church is believed to have been constructed in 1853 (Manathunga, 2016). However, the old bell tower in front of the church building shows features belonging to the Dutch Period [(1658-1796) Manathunga, 2016]. Built of stone, the tower bears a striking resemblance to the historic Kayman's Gate Bell Tower in Pettah (Manathunga, 2016).

References
1) Manathunga, S. B., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Saha Smaraka: Kolamba Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 955-9159-39-9. pp.51-52.

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This page was last updated on 5 November 2022

Monday, 10 October 2022

St. Paul's Church, Milagiriya

Milagiriya St. Paul's Church
St. Paul's Church (Sinhala: මිලාගිරිය ශාන්ත පාවුළු දේවස්ථානය) is an Anglican church in Milagiriya in Colombo District, Sri Lanka. It is considered one of the oldest Anglican churches in the Colombo area.

History
Milagiriya St. Paul's Church
On the site where present St. Paul’s Church stands was a church called Nossa Senhora Dos Milagres (our lady of Miracle) built by the Portuguese [(1597-1658) Manathunga, 2016]. The Portuguese left the island when Dutch took over control of their territories in 1658 and it is believed that this church was destroyed by the Dutch later. The British who replaced the Dutch power on the island in 1796 built a small church in Gothic style on this site again in 1848 and established a school attached to it in 1853 (Manathunga, 2016). The present church building is said to have been constructed in 1890 and it was renovated in 1903 (Manathunga, 2016).

Attribution

References
1) Manathunga, S. B., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Saha Smaraka: Kolamba Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 955-9159-39-9. p.51.

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This page was last updated on 10 October 2022

Sunday, 9 October 2022

Old Marketing Development Building (Colombo Fort)

Old Marketing Development Building
Old Marketing Development Building (Photo credit: Google Street View)

The Old Marketing Development Building (Sinhala: පැරණි අලෙවි සංවර්ධන ගොඩනැගිල්ල) is located on Chatham Street in Colombo Fort, Sri Lanka.

The 2-storied building is said to have been constructed in 1878 (Manathunga, 2016). Designed by British architect Bennet, it has been used to house the offices of several government institutes and departments (Manathunga, 2016).

The building with a portico section in front has elements bearing simple Roman and Victorian architectural features (Manathunga, 2016). The two floors are separated by a wooden floor and the roof is balanced on vertical and horizontal steel beams attached to the floor.

References
1) Manathunga, S. B., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Saha Smaraka: Kolamba Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 955-9159-39-9. p.31.

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This page was last updated on 9 October 2022

Saturday, 8 October 2022

Victoria Memorial Eye Hospital, Colombo

Victoria Memorial Eye Hospital, Colombo
Victoria Memorial Eye Hospital, Colombo (Photo credit: Google Street View)

Victoria Memorial Eye Hospital (Sinhala: වික්ටෝරියා අනුස්මරණ ඇස් රෝහල) is an eye hospital located facing the Lipton Circus in Cinnamon Gardens in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

History
Victoria Memorial Eye Hospital
The idea to build a hospital in memory of the late Queen Victoria (1837-1901) was suggested by Lady West Ridgeway, the wife of the British Governor Joseph West Ridgeway (1896-1903), who with the support of others including Muhandiram N. S. Fernando, Charles Pieris and H. J. Pieris able to lay the foundation stone for the hospital on 6 August 1903 (Manathunga, 2016; Wright, 1999). Designed by Edward Skinner, the hospital building was constructed by the Public Works Department (Manathunga, 2016; Wright, 1999).

The completed hospital was opened on 2 April 1906 (Denham, 1912).

The building
The 2-storied red-brick building bears a blend of Hindu, Moorish and Victorian architecture styles (Manathunga, 2016). At the time of its construction, the building had a frontage of 200 ft., with a depth of 97 ft. from wall to wall, and 38 ft. at the facade (Wright, 1999).

References
1) Denham, E.B., 1912. Ceylon at the Census of 1911. HC Cottle, government printer, Ceylon. p.382.
2) Manathunga, S. B., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Saha Smaraka: Kolamba Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 955-9159-39-9. p.53.
3) Wright, A. ed., 1999. Twentieth Century Impressions of Ceylon: Its History, People, Commerce, Industries, and Resources (first published in 1907). Asian Educational Services. pp.421-423,476,552.

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This page was last updated on 8 October 2022

Friday, 7 October 2022

King Buvanekabahu IV of Gampola

Lankatilaka Viharaya inscription
Buvanekabahu IV (Sinhala: හතරවන බුවනෙකබාහු රජ) was the first king of Gampola Kingdom, Sri Lanka from 1341 A.D. to 1351 A.D. (Ray, 1960). He succeeded his father Vijayabahu V (1335-1341 A.D.) of Dambadeniya and was succeeded by Parakkamabahu V (1344-1359 A.D.).

Inscriptions
A few inscriptions belonging to the reign of King Buvanekabahu IV have been found (Ranawella, 2014).
 
Dated in the 3rd regnal year of Buvanekabahu IV, the inscription reveals detail about the foundation of a shrine of Buddha at Gadaladeniya by the great Sthavira Dhammakirti who came of the Ganavasi stock.
  
2) Lankathilaka Viharaya Rock Inscription (from Kandy District)
Dated in the 3rd regnal year of Buvanekabahu IV, the inscription contains a detailed account of the founding of the Lankatilaka Viharaya, mainly due to the efforts of Senalankadhikara, which is followed by a list of the lands and the other donations made to it by the king, Senalankadhikara and other notables of the period.
 
3) Malvattegala Rock Inscription (from Colombo District)
This inscription mentions about a prince named Virasundara, a contemporary of King Buvanekabahu IV.

Attribution
4) Lankathilaka Viharaya 92 by Cherubino is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

References
1) Ranawella, S., 2014. Archaeological Survey of Ceylon: Inscriptions of Ceylon: Vol. VII. Department of Archaeology. ISBN: 978-955-9159-62-9. pp.27-50.
3) Ray, H.C. (Editor in chief), 1960. History of Ceylon: Vol. I: Part II. Ceylon University Press. Colombo. pp.636-637.

This page was last updated on 7 October 2022

Thursday, 6 October 2022

Seated Tara, British Museum

Seated Tara, British Museum
A Statue of Tara belonging to the 7-8th century is presently preserved in the Hugh Nevill Collection at the British Museum, United Kingdom. Discovered in Sri Lanka, the statue represents the Buddhist goddess Tara in the seated position.

Seated Tara from the British Museum

Museum number : 1898,0702.142                         Cultures / periods: Buddhist/ Anuradhapura
Production date   : 7-8th century A.D.                    Production place : Sri Lanka
Materials               : Bronze/gold                             Technique             : Cast/ guilded
Dimensions          : Height: 15 cm
                                 Width  : 8.30 inches
                                 Depth  : 8.50 cm 
Subjects                : Buddhist deity                          Associated names: Tara
Reference              : British Museum Collection (1898,0702.142)

Tara Devi is considered the most beloved goddess of the Mahayana Buddhist pantheon (Jayawardene, 2016). She started to appear in the society of Sri Lanka around the seventh or eighth century A.D. and was worshipped until the fifteenth century A.D. (Jayawardene, 2016). Evidence for Tara worship in Sri Lanka is found in the Mihintale Slab Inscriptions of Mahinda IV (956-972 A.D.) where she is referred to as goddess Mininal (Gunawardana, 2019; Jayawardene, 2016; Wickremasinghe, 1912). The largest figure of Tara in the country is found in Buduruwagala (Gunawardana, 2019).

The statue
The statue, casted in a copper alloy and gilded, depicts the goddess Tara in Lalitāsana position (right foot directed downwards and the bent left leg over the seat). Her left hand rests on the seat outside the left thigh while the right hand rests on the right thigh depicting the Varda Mudra (Wikramagamage, 1990). The lower body is covered with an Antariya and a Dhoti and a band of cloth runs from shoulder to waist (Wikramagamage, 1990). The raised headdress (turban) is surrounded by a narrow crown (Wikramagamage, 1990).

Attribution

References
1) Gunawardana, N., 2019. Identify the statues of Goddess Tārā in Sri Lanka and Evaluate the Importance with Trade. International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, 9(9), pp.404-410.
2) Jayawardene, S., 2016. Sri Lanka's Tārā Devī. Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka, 61(2), pp.1-30.
3) Wikramagamage, C., 1990. [Wijesekara, N. (Editor in chief)] Section II: 500-100 A.D. Archaeological Department Centenary (1890-1990): Commemorative Series: Vol. IV: Sculpture. p.72.
4) Wickremasinghe, D.M.D.Z., 1912. Epigraphia Zeylanica: Being lithic and other inscription of Ceylon (Vol. I). London. Archaeological Survey of Ceylon. p.103.

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This page was last updated on 6 October 2022