Nalanda Gedige, Matale

4.3
Nalanda Gedige is an ancient complete stone building near Matale, Sri Lanka. This building was an ancient Hindu Temple constructed in between 8th to 10th century with dravidian architecture and then believe to have been used by Buddhists. Also some scholars describe this building is a dravidian architecture dedicated to a Mahayanaa cult with pronounced Trantric learning and known for an ancient monument of possible Vajrayana Buddhist affinities.Nalanda Gedige is designed like a Hindu temple with a mandapa, an entrance hall, a short passage to a bare cello, and an ambulatory round the holy center. There is no sign of Hindu gods today, however, and the temple is said to have been used by Buddhists.The richly decorated facade sections, laboriously reassembled in 1975, are predominantly in the South Indian style, and may have originated in the eighth to 11th centuries, but cannot be precisely dated. However, the god Kubera appears on the south side of the tympanum over the sanctuary, and this is a feature only to be found in Sri Lanka.HistoryEstimates of its date of construction vary from the 8th to 10th centuries AD. This was a period of great turmoil on the island, with South Indian kings establishing themselves in the wake of the decline of the Sinhalese monarchy. It is possible that Nalanda Gedige was a bold attempt at a fusion of Tamil and Sinhalese cultures.History of Nalanda Gedige as an archaeological site began in 1893, when, according to then Archaeological Commissioner, H. C. P. Bell, "land was acquired round this little-known and solitary shrine of granite construction, popularly styled gedige. It is situated on raised ground in paddy fields, picturesquely surrounded by low hills and wooded hamlets. In 1911 a small gang was detached from the labor force at Sigiriya to thoroughly root out all the jungle growth upon and around the ruin besides cutting still further back the earth silt hiding the bold stylites upon which the fane stands. Very special importance attaches to this unique temple, as it is the sole example yet discovered in Ceylon of composite styles of architecture judiciously blended to form a delightfully homogeneous edifice."
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Nalanda Gedige Reviews
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  • On my way home candy made by threeweeler in the Sigiriya visited. Alone and very quiet. Impressed and was once the center of Sri Lanka well.
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  • I was in this location few months before. Believe this is the center point of SriLanka. The original temple was remo ved few decades before as a result of dam and lake for the hydro power.(IN 1980 the...  more »
  • This temple was recently cut up into pieces and moved to higher ground, where it is now, otherwise it would have been at the bottom of the reservoir that surrounds it. A beautiful, very old temple, th...  more »
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  • It's very special temple because of it's unique architecture. Also this location believe to be the centre of country. This is very close to main road. Just one or two km from the main road.
  • The place is really calm and quiet. There is no ticket fee to enter for tourists or locals. The monument has been shifted from it's original location due to the hydro power project carried in the adjacent lake. There is a special carving depicting two lovers in the bottom of the main monument.
  • Another ancient place in Sri Lanka. They say the Gedige was lifted up manually some time back. Surrounding was beautiful. Easy to locate.
  • Worth a visit for history lovers.. very old temple.. Not much informative but the architecture is worth noticing
  • Calm pleasant environment. Free to visit. Historical place. Named as centre of Sri Lanka.
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