Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Purana Tampita Viharaya – මහවැව ශ්‍රී නාගාරාම පුරාණ ටැම්පිට විහාරය

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Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Purana Tampita Viharaya after restoration by the Archaeology Department in 2010 - මහවැව ශ්‍රී නාගාරාම පුරාණ ටැම්පිට විහාරය
Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Purana Tampita Viharaya after restoration by the Archaeology Department in 2010 – මහවැව ශ්‍රී නාගාරාම පුරාණ ටැම්පිට විහාරය

Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Purana Viharaya is an ancient temple with a Tampita Viharaya built during the era of the Kandyan kingdom. However the paintings and the statues seems to have gone through a makeover at a later date and doesnt show the typical features of kandyan sittara art.

A Tampita Viharaya is a structure built on a wooden platform which rests on number of stone stumps usually 3-4 feet tall. The roof is held by a structure built of timber and the walls are generally made of wattle and daub.

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Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Tampita Viharaya is built on 9 wooden pillars and 3 cement pillars, each 3 feet 1 inch tall. The building is 18 feet long and 14 feet wide. Th image house is 10 feet 3 inches long and 8 feet 2 inches wide. A circumambulating path is built around the image house with a half height protective call. This is 2 feet 4 inches wide on the sides and the rear.

The Tampita Viharaya at Sri Nagaramaya was conserved by the Archaeology Department in 2010. The rotten wood at the base and the pillars were replaced and the damaged walls has been filled and the older paintings restored. The wooden stair case has been replaced with a cement and rock steps. These steps leads to the porch of the Tampita Viharaya. The roof is built on top of 11 wooden pillars. These pillars lack any carvings.

Two statues of Door Keepers are are found beside the main entrance which lies beneath a beautiful Makara Thorana (Dragon Arch) and the entrnce is built in the form of a chandrawanka. There are 3 Buddha statues belonging to the Kandyan era. The main image placed at the center on the rear wall in Samadhi mudra and is 3 feet 8 inches tall. There are 2 standing statues beside the Buddha statue built backing the side walls. These two statue are generally considered as of Sariyuth and Mugalan, the two chief disciples of Buddha. However these 2 statues are also very similar in features to the center statue complete with the aura around the body, these two statue are also of possibly of Buddha himself. These 2 statues are 4 feet 10 inches tall. Hands of the right statue represent Abhaya Mudra and and on the left statue, right hand shows Abhaya Mudra and the left hand shows Kataka Mudra. A statue of Vishu is found next to the Buddha statue on the right hand side and a statue of daitey Natha is found next to the Buddha on the left hand side.

Some plaster has fallen off from the wall beside the main image and some of the more older paintings have exposed. This includes a paining of a Bikkhu. At the bottom you see a row of Upasaka with flowers in thier hands going to worship Buddha. At the top of the wall, you see daities with flowers worshiping Buddha. One of the wood pillars indicate that this temple has been built in Buddhist Era 2391 (1847). However the older paintings indicate that they are of a older style and possibly built during the era of the Kandyan Kingdom and renovated in 1847.

More older paintings have been exposed on the right hand wall of the maintrance. Paintings of two human figures of high status and on the left side paintings of two average people are seen here. One of them is carrying a sward and wears a head dress similar to a crown. This is probably the king of Kandy himself or a high minister.

This temple lies  between Marawila and Chilaw. The distance is 16 kms (20 mins ) from Chilaw and and 29 km ( 45 minutes) from Negombo. To reach the temple from Negombo, Travel towards Chilaw upto Mahawewa and then turn left from Pansal Handiya. The temple lies just 250 meters down this road.

This Tampita Viharaya was declared as a protected archaeological monument by the gazette dated 23 February 2007.

References

  • තල්ගහවෙල සුමේධ හිමි, 2021. පුත්තලම් දිස්ත්රික්කයේ ටැම්පිට පිලිමගෙවල් සහ ටැම්පිට දේවාල. 1st ed. හලාවත: කතෘ ප්‍රකාශනයකි.

Also See

Map of the Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Purana Tampita Viharaya

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The map above also shows other places of interest within a approximately 20 km radius of the current site. Click on any of the markers and the info box to take you to information of these sites

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Driving Directions to Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Purana Tampita Viharaya

Route from Colombo to Mahawewa Sri Nagarama Purana Tampita Viharaya

Though : Negombo – Marawila
distance : 66 km
Travel time :2 hours
Time to spend :  30  mins
Driving directions : see on google map

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