Minigamuwa Tempita Viharaya

Minigamuwa Tempita Viharaya
Minigamuwa Raja Maha Viharaya (Sinhala: මිණිගමුව ටැම්පිට විහාරය) is a Buddhist temple situated in Minigamuwa village in Kandy District, Sri Lanka.

This temple is said to have been established during the reign of King Wimaladharmasuriya II [(1687-1707 A.D.) Rajapakse, 2016].

The Tempita Viharaya of this temple is of archaeological importance. It was constructed in the latter part of the 19th century under the guidance of Walpola Sumanga Thera (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021). The murals have been executed by a painter named Hirihagama Gurunnanse (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021).

Tempita Viharaya
Tempita Viharas were popular in 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 form the main enclosed shrine room containing Buddhist sculptures and murals in 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).

Minigamuwa Tempita Viharaya
The Minigamuwa Tempita Viharaya has been built upon more than 20 short stone pillars (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021). The pillars were plastered during the renovations done in the early 20th century (Silva & Chandrasekara, 2021). A seated Buddha statue in Dyana Mudra (meditation posture), six standing Buddha statues and two images of deities are found inside the image house (Rajapakse, 2016). The inner walls and the ceiling have been adorned with Kandyan era paintings (Rajapakse, 2016). A preaching hall has been built in front of it later.

A protected site
The Tempita Viharaya at Minigamuwa Raja Maha Viharaya situated in Minigamuwa village in the Galagedara Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government Gazette notification published on 22 November 2002.

Minigamuwa Tempita Viharaya
1) would like to thank Vishwa Sri Jayasinghe for providing the necessary photographs required for this article. All the photos are published here with the permission of the author.
1) Rajapakse, S., 2016. Pauranika Sthana Ha Smaraka: Mahanuwara Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Archaeological Department of Sri Lanka. ISBN:955-9159-34-8. pp.165-166.
2) Silva, K.D. and Chandrasekara, D.P., 2021. The Tämpiṭavihāras of Sri Lanka: Elevated Image-Houses in Buddhist Architecture. Anthem Press. pp.80-81.
3) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1264. 22 November 2002.
4) Wijayawardhana, K., 2010. Sri Lankawe Tampita Vihara (In Sinhala). Dayawansa Jayakody & Company. Colombo. ISBN: 978-955-551-752-2. p.12,291-294.

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This page was last updated on 8 April 2023
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