Gonagiri Raja Maha Viharaya

Gonagiri Viharaya
Gonagiri Raja Maha Viharaya (Sinhala: ගෝණගිරි රජමහා විහාරය) is a Buddhist cave temple complex situated near Kahatagasdigiliya town in Anuradhapura District, Sri Lanka.

This temple is believed to have been established during the reign of King Suratissa (247-237 B.C.) of Anuradhapura (Piyarathana Thero, 2015). The chronicle Mahavamsa (Chap: xxi) records that King Suratissa built a temple named Gonnagirika Viharaya in the eastern quarter of the city (Geiger, 1986; Nicholas, 1963). Many believe that Gonnagirika is non-other than the Gonagiri temple at the present site.

A protected site
The Gonagiri Rajamaha Vihara premises in the Grama Niladhari  Wasama No. 230, Mahamessallawa in the Kahatagasdigiliya Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected site, declared by a government notification published on 30 December 2011.

1) Geiger, W., 1986. The Mahāvaṃsa, or, The Great Chronicle of Ceylon. Asian Educational Services, New Delhi. p.140. 
2) Nicholas, C. W., 1963. Historical topography of ancient and medieval Ceylon. Journal of the Ceylon Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society, New Series, vol VI, Special Number: Colombo. Royal Asiatic Society (Ceylon Branch). p.150.
3) Piyarathana Thero, L., 2015. ගෝණගිරි රජමහා විහාරයේ පුස්කොළ පොත් එකතු පිළිබඳ ග්‍රන්ථ විද්‍යාත්මක අධ්‍යයනයක් (අනුරාධපුර දිස්ත්‍රික්කය ඇසුරෙන්). Proceedings of the International Postgraduate Research Conference. University of Kelaniya. p.339.
4) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1739. 30 December 2011. p.1094.

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This page was last updated on 22 June 2023

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