Bunnehepola Raja Maha Viharaya

Bunnehepola Viharaya
Sri Sudharmarama Purana Viharaya, also known as Bunnehepola Raja Maha Viharaya (Sinhala: බුන්නැහැපොළ ශ්‍රී සුධර්මාරාම පුරාණ විහාරය), is a Buddhist temple in Bunnehepola village in Kurunegala District, Sri Lanka.

History
Locals link the history of this temple to the reign of King Devanampiyatissa (247-207 B.C.) of Anuradhapura (Anuradha & Kumari, 2015). It is said that this site was used to organize troops during the war of the South Indian invader Kalinga Magha 1216-1236 A.D.), the last ruler of the Polonnaruwa Kingdom (Anuradha & Kumari, 2015). Bunnehepola, the present name of the village is said to have evolved after a soldier who fought in this war lost his nose at this spot (Anuradha & Kumari, 2015).

The temple consists of several ancient structures that now remain in ruins. The foundation of an image house and the remains of an old wall are among the main monuments found in the temple premises. During archaeological excavations, several artefacts such as Yantra Gal, caskets and bronze items have been unearthed (Anuradha & Kumari, 2015). 

A protected site
The foundation of the ancient image house and the wall belonging to the Bunnehepola Sri Sudharmarama Purana Viharaya premises situated in the No. 1501 Bunnehepola Grama Niladhari Division in the Udubaddawa Divisional Secretary’s Division are archaeological protected monuments, declared by a government Gazette notification published on 24 July 2009.

Bunnehepola Viharaya Bunnehepola Viharaya
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Attribution
1) LankaPradeepa.com 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.

References
1) Anuradha, R.K.S.; Kumari, A.S., 2015. Pauranika Sthana Saha Smaraka: Kurunegala Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology (Sri Lanka). ISBN: 955-9159-37-2. p.79.
2) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. no: 1612. 24 July 2009. p.1023.

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This page was last updated on 22 October 2023
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