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of which Kaelaniya, near Colombo, was the headquarters. It would seem that he acquired or succeeded to his father-inlaw's territory, which must have extended far up the west coast, so as to embrace the tract of country in which Paramākanda is found. At a much later date it is certain that the Kaelaniya kingdom included this district and extended many miles to the north of it, up to the Kala-oya1; and this may have been its limit in earlier times also. This will account for Tissa's being able to make grants to this temple while Elāra was ruling at Anuradhapura.

Both the inscriptions at the Parama-kanda wihāra purport to have been cut to record grants made by this Chieftain Tissa; but the difference in the shapes of the letter 7 in them appears to show that the first is older than the other, which may perhaps have been cut by order of Duṭṭha-Gāmiņi as a record of his father's work at the cave temple. If both were the work of the same stone-cutters it is not likely that such a variation would be made in the forms of the letters. The older one may date from the first quarter of the second century B.C.

In No. 52 and the two following inscriptions we find the straight r always used, and the earliest forms of m and j. The symbol inserted beside the fish does not appear to occur elsewhere in Ceylon, and I offer no explanation of its presence. It is the letter m with a central upright, of the earliest known script, and it occurs in Spain and Egypt (1st Dynasty). I should assign these inscriptions to the middle of the second century B.C.

I place next an inscription over a cave at a large boulder lying on the side of the hill at Dambulla, on the road from Kandy to Anuradhapura. The early shapes of the letters r,

1 This is proved by the list of tanks repaired by Parākrama-Bāhu I at the time when he was ruling over only southern Ceylon and Kaelaniya, and Gaja-Bāhu was king at Polannaruwa (Mah., ii, p. 149). Those which can be identified extend through the district immediately south and west of the Kala-oya, and include Magalla, Giribāwa, Morawaewa, Maediyāwa, Talagalla, and Siyambalan-gamuwa. On p. 150 the Tabba (Tabbowa) district, which is far north of Paramā-kanda, is referred to as being under him.

m and j render it probable that it also dates from the time of Duttha-Gāmiņi. It is as follows:


Damarakita teraha lene agata anagata catu disa sagasa dine. Gamani Abayasa rajiyahi karite. The cave of the thera Dhammarakkhita; given to the Community of the four quarters, present or future. In the reign of Gāmaņi Abhaya it is made. In the Dipavansa (p. 209) a thēra termed the 'learned Dhammarakkhita' is mentioned among those who came from India at the laying of the foundation bricks of the Ruwanwaeli dagaba, but there is nothing to prove that he remained in Ceylon, or that this inscription was cut by his orders. The name was not uncommon, and is found in the inscriptions numbered 8 and 9, and elsewhere.

(57.) Of about the same age is one at a dewāla, or demon temple, on Dēwāla-hinna, a hill at Tittawaela, in the Northwestern Province :—

Bata Maha Tisaha lene. Gamaņi Abayasa rajiya sika (ka) sagasa.

The cave of the workman Maha-Tissa. (In) the

reign of Gāmaņi Abhaya. To the Community who keep the Precepts (sila).

Possibly the following inscriptions belong to the same period. They are found at Nuwara-kanda in the Kurunāēgala district, a hill buried in the jungle, on the bank of the Daeduru-oya. Another inscription of later date informs us that its ancient name was the Tissa mountain. The size of the bricks found there has been given previously.


Gamika Siva puta Maharajaha rāmata Kaṇatisaha agata anagata chatu disagasa dine.

(The cave) of Kaṇatissa, devoted to the great King, son (of) the villager (headman) 1 Siva; given to the Community of the four quarters, present or future.

(59.) Gamika Siva puta Gami Kaṇatisaha leņe.

1 Gamika is probably equivalent to the modern word Gamarāla, a village headman or elder. Compare No. 55.



The cave of the villager (headman) Kaṇatissa, son (of) the villager (headman) Siva.

Gami Kaṇatisaha Badakajaka Anu(rada) ha leņe agata anagata catu disagasaga.

The cave of Bhaddakacchaka Anuradha (son) of the villager (headman) Kaṇatissa; to the preeminent Community of the four quarters, present or future.

Tisaguta terasa leņe.

The cave of the thēra Tissagutta.

I omit many cave inscriptions at places where no reference is made to the king of the period, although the forms of the letters indicate that many of them belong to the second century B.C., or earlier.

The next inscription is cut above a cave on the edge of a deep precipice at Mihintale. I examined the letters closely by the aid of a ladder held back by two men and almost overhanging the precipice, so that there should be no uncertainty regarding them. It belongs to Prince Sāli, the son of DuṭṭhaGāmiņi, whose romantic love story is related in the Mahāvansa (i, p. 127), which explains how he abandoned his right to the throne in order to keep his low-caste wife.1

The inscription is preceded by a complex symbol which may represent the Flag of Victory of Buddhism, raised high on a pole which rests on a horizontal base-line. Under the flag, on the same staff, is the trisūla resting on the circle, and below this a reversed disk-and-crescent. Four short uprights, two on each side of the pole, which stand on the base-line may indicate the Four Great Truths of Buddhism, or the four-fold

1 'He had a son renowned under the designation of the royal prince Sāli, gifted with good fortune in an eminent degree and incessantly devoted to acts of piety. He became enamoured of a lovely female of the Candāla caste. Having been wedded in a former existence also to this maiden,2 whose name was Aśōkamālā, and who was endowed with exquisite beauty, fascinated therewith he relinquished his right to the sovereignty.' She is said by tradition to have lived at a Duraya village at Hengamuwa, in the North-western Province.

• His grandfather was also believed to have been a pious Candāla in his former life.

forces of the sovereign, protecting the symbols. The inscription

is very short —


Gāmiņi dhama rājasa putasa Aya Asalisa leņe.

The cave of the Noble Asāli, of the son of the devout

king Gāmiņi.1

Mr. Bell, the Government Archaeologist, met with some cave inscriptions in the North-central Province, left by the sons of Saddhātissa, the brother of Duṭṭha-Gāmiņi. One of these, at a hill called Kuḍā Arambaedda-hinna, which is part of Ritigala, is as follows (Annual Report, 1893, p. 9). The king is of course Lajjitissa (119–109 B.C.).


(La)jaka Tisa maharaje wihara karawaya Abadaļuka wawi saga dini.

The great king Lajjaka Tissa caused the wihara

to be made (and) gave the Abadaļuka tank (to) the Community.

(64.) Another at the same place is-Gamani Abayi kubara saga dini.

Gāmaṇi Abhaya gave the field (to) the Community. Apparently this belongs to Waṭṭa-Gāmiņi before he came to the throne in 104 B.C.; it is noteworthy that he does not give himself the title Noble.'

In his Annual Report for 1897, p. 11, Mr. Bell mentions another inscription by Waṭṭa-Gāmiņi at Min-vila, and at p. 9 one by Lajjitissa at Duwegala, but gives no copy or transliteration of them.

(65.) He records one of nearly the same period over a cave at Saessāēruwa, in the North-western Province, and gives a transliteration of the first part of it as follows:

Devanapiya Maharajaha Gamaņi Abayaha jita
Abi Anuridiya, etc., the rest probably being merely
the usual dedication of the cave to the monks.
Abhi Anuridhiya, daughter of the great king Gāmaṇi
Abhaya, beloved of the Gods, etc.

Mr. Bell attributes it to a daughter of King Waṭṭa-Gāmiņi;

1 I have two other inscriptions of one district in the North-western Province, in which a 'Parumaka Asaliya' is mentioned, but evidently he is some other person, his father being a chief called Nāga.

it may be gathered from Mah., i, p. 129, that this king had one whose name is not given by the annalists.

Through the kindness of my friend Mr. F. Lewis of the Forest Department in Ceylon, I am able to add a recently found inscription cut at a cave at Kusalāna-kanda, near Rūgama, in the Eastern Province. It was discovered and copied by his Forest Ranger, and has not been examined by Mr. Lewis; but it appears to be so important in connection with the identification of the authors of several other inscriptions, that although it may prove to require some correction I now give a facsimile (Fig. No. 151), and a transliteration and tentative translation of it as it stands in the hand-copy sent to me. (66.) Upaja Naga p(u)te Raja Abaye namā tatā-p(u)te Gamani Tisa namate nakarate sudasane sagasa. Born the son (of) Naga (and) by King Abhaya named (his)' own son' (the prince) named Gāmaṇi Tissa has prepared the 'Beautiful' (cave) of the Community.

This agrees so accurately with the account in the Mahavansa (i, p. 129) of Waṭṭa-Gāmiņi Abhaya's adoption of the son of his brother, King Khallata-Nāga, that it appears to settle the question of the identification of the sovereign called Gāmiņi-Tissa, who is thus Mahācula Maha-Tissa.

It still leaves some difficulties. In the first place, the letters are all of the very earliest shapes, with the bent r, the angular s, and the cup-shaped m; one would not expect to find all these forms still in use during the reign of Waṭṭa-Gāmiņi. Secondly, we have the Gal-lena inscriptions which follow, that appear to belong to the same prince, who calls himself in them merely 'the Noble Tissa,' and uses a decidedly later type of letters. The difficulty in connection with the writing may perhaps be explained by assuming that there was still a retention of the old forms of letters in the beginning of Waṭṭa-Gamini's reign, while an alphabet more in accordance with that used in India was coming into use by the stone-cutters after he had regained the throne in 88 B.C.

With only two exceptions there is a peculiarity observable in Gāmiņi-Tissa's inscriptions; in six out of the eight that

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