Mannakulam Archaeological Ruins in Vavuniya (වවුනියාව මන්නකුලම් පුරාවිද්‍යා නටබුන්)

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The small junction of Mannakulam is found on the Vavuniya-Jaffna road, 40 kilometres off Vavuniya town. Turning left from this junction and travelling 590 meters will bring you to the rail road to Jaffna. Travelling 410 meters to the South along the railway line will bring you to the ruins of an ancient monastery in the jungle patch lying between the railway line and the main road.

Among the ruins, you will find the remains of a building with 17 standing pillars and one fallen (Jayawardhana, 2019). A pillar inscription lies fallen on the ground. A mound covered in jungle weed had been a stupa in ancient times.

The pillar inscription is written in Medieval Sinhalese Script and has been dated to the 4th to 8th centuries (Chaturanga, 2021). The inscription describes a pooja and its merits. The Stupa mound is 8 meters in diameter and about 5 meters in height. The pillars of the building structure is 60-70 cm in height and are believed to be the base pillars of a Tampita Vihara (dasathalankanews, 2021). A large pit has been dug at the stupa by treasure hunters in search of treasures in recent times.

The ruins of this ancient Buddhist monastery in Mannakulam came into the public eye in 2021 even though the details of these ruins were known long before and Major Sarath Jayawardhana published the details in 2019. In 2021, the Department of Archaeology started an excavation and copied the inscription at the site.

References

  1. Jayawardhana, S. (2019) in වව්නියාවේ පුරාවිද්‍යා උරුමය . 2nd edn. Kegalle: Self Published, p 31.
  2. Madushanka, R. (2021) Archaeological site discovered inside Vavuniya Forest Reserve, Times Online. Available at: https://sundaytimes.lk/online/news-online/Archaeological-site-discovered-inside-Vavuniya-forest-reserve/2-1133336 (Accessed: 06 February 2024).
  3. Chaturanga, S. (2021) වවුනියාවෙන් අනුරාධපුර යුගයට අයත් ශිලා ලේඛනයක් සහිත පුරාවිද්‍යා ස්මාරක. Available at: https://www.lankadeepa.lk/news/වවුනියාවෙන්-අනුරාධපුර-යුගයට-අයත්–ශිලා-ලේඛනයක්-සහිත-පුරාවිද්‍යා-ස්මාරක/101-590746 (Accessed: 06 February 2024).
  4. වවුනියා මහා වනාන්තරයෙන් මතු වූ විශ්මිත සාක්ෂිය (photos) (2021) Dasatha Lanka News. Available at: https://dasathalankanews.com/වවුනියා-මහා-වනාන්තරයෙන්/ (Accessed: 06 February 2024).

Also See

Map of Mannakulam Archaeological Ruins in Vavuniya

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Travel Directions to Mannakulam Archaeological Ruins in Vavuniya

From Anuradhapura to Mannakulam Archaeological Ruins in Vavuniya
Distance : 69 km
Travel time : 1.30  hour + hike
Driving directions : see on Google map

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