Sri lanka

Polonnaruwa

Polonnaruwa

City of Poonnaruwa is full of variety in graceful of sceneries. This is the second capital as well as the second kingdom of ancient Sri Lanka from 1055 to 1215 century AD and ruled by 20 kings. Polonnaruwa is rich with massive reservoirs/tanks, irrigation systems and magnificent monuments depicting ancient Sinhalese Buddhist culture. The ancient Buddhist edifices are wonderful creations, full of meaning in king’s era. They depict Buddhist concept.

The statue of king Prakramabahu the great

This is a colossal rock-cut statue which is subjected to everybody’s curiosity. It is eleven feet and seven inches in height, with broad face and fore-head. Archeologists believe, this is the statue of the king Parakramabahu the great who ruled the Polonnaruwa kingdom from 1153 to 1186 century AD. Sculpturing of this rock cut statue been done in same period, 12th AD. The statue is draped with a floral designed decoration of exquisite charm. Folds of the drapery are clearly shown. The belt around the waist been tied into a male knot. It’s an artistic skill of ancient Sinhalese granite sculptures.

The royal palace of king Parakramabahu the great

The archeologists describe the palace as seven stories high, furnished with thousand chambers. The remains of three stories and 55 rooms could be seen today. Outside the main palace building, there are smaller apartments which probably housed for official clergymen, body guards and servants. Its wooden upper floors were held up by wooden columns. The remains of granite staircase for upper floors could be seen. The walls are massively thick. It must have been a very large palace of majestic appearance.

Council chamber of king Nissankamalla

King Nissankamalla ruled the Polonnaruwa kingdom from 1187 to 1196 AD. The king’s council chamber situated in the royal garden and it’s one of the most interesting buildings in Polonnaruwa. This is a three terraced building with carvings of elephant, horses and lions. There are four rows of elegant stone pillars and over the pillars there would have been a wooden roof. The inscriptions on the pillars are more important than their scenic beauty. The inscription on the lion in the council chamber records that it served as a throne to the king. Lion may have been used to decorate the king’s throne in order to display the majesty of the king.

The Vatadage

Circular Relic House
This is one of the most remarkable architectural monuments to be seen in Polonnaruwa. Meaning of “Vatadage” is circular building. It built to protect and house the tooth relic of Buddha. All the walls of this building bountifully carved. Four seated Buddha statues (Meditating Postures) been placed in cardinal directions, facing the four entrances. Guard stone at the eastern entrance is remarkable and unique.

Nissanka Latha Mandapaya

An inscription records that this was built by King Nissankamalla in 12th century AD for the purpose of chanting doctrine of Buddha (Pirith) to honour to tooth relic of Buddha. The eight feet height stone pillars are erected like blossoming lotus buds.

Gal Potha Inscription

Stone Book
This is the biggest slab inscription found in Sri Lanka done by king Nissankamalla. It is 27½ feet long 4½ feet width and brought to Polonnaruwa from 80km away, city of Mihintale. On the lower portion of the slab display the carvings of swan. Sides of the stone book, there is a carving of two elephants showering the goddess Gajalakshmi.

The Gal Viharaya

This is one of the most outstanding sites symbolic of Polonnaruwa, built by king Parakramabahu the great whose kingdom was Polonnaruwa in 12th century AD. There are four stone statues carved out the existing rock which is 180 feet in length and 30 feet height. There are :Sitting (Meditating) Buddha statue, Upright Buddha statue, Recumbent Buddha statue, Sitting (Meditating) Buddha statue in Vijjadhara Guha –(Cave). The images are different in posture and sizes, seems to be in individual shrine rooms.