Category Archives: ancient civilisations
Tony Donaldson’s Treasure Trove
Here are two photos of Charlie Chaplin in Bali from my collection.
In one photograph, we see Chaplin in a comical moment as if he is conducting a gamelan orchestra in a Balinese village, possibly Ubud. He could also be dancing in front of the gamelan — for the way his arms and hands are positioned suggest this We can’t say for sure. The gamelan players are clearly enjoying this moment with Chaplin, with lots of fun and laughter. A gamelan orchestra is led by the kendang (drum) player – the nearest thing to a kind of conductor in a gamelan.
Few need introductions to the Western movement of slaves from Africa across the Atlantic Ocean. Much has been documented and studied about this horrific part of history. But this wasn’t the only slave route that existed; a far older eastern movement of slaves was forcibly taking people to the opposite side of the world. Between the first and 20th century, beginning with Arabs and the Ottomans, and later continued by the Portuguese, the Dutch, French and the British, an estimated 4 million Africans were taken from their homes, mostly in East Africa, and across the Indian Ocean.
Sri Lanka’s hydraulic civilization spans over two Millenia and is integral part of our agricultural heritage. Watch the story of the origins, the rise, the golden age, the decline and the resurgence of this technology. Voice talent – Arun Dias-Bandaranaike And don’t forget to subscribe 🙂 for more content For more fascinating video’s on Sri Lanka check out channel Destination Sri Lanka https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwRl… #destinationsrilanka #srilanka #beautysrilanka #srilankaculture #srilankasights #srilankalocation #irrigationsystems #irrigation #hydraulic #civilization
Shihan de Silva Jayasuriya of the University of London has been researching the Portuguese in the East for over twenty years and has generated a significant number of studies on Portuguese Creole peoples, their life-style ad languages in Sri Lanka and elsewhere. Her output of work has been as varied as commendable and I begin with a summary of one article dealing with “a nineteenth-century manuscript in Sri Lankan Portuguese Creole” because i am presently fashioning an article that refers to the work of Hugh Nevill on the Kāberi Hatana in order to ‘educate’ those who have touched on African slave labour at Galle without possessing any background information on the topic. This essay is in process and will appear soon….. Michael Roberts
C.M. Madduma Bandara**
Some Past Attempts: Since [securing] National Independence in 1948, there [have been] three Constitutions (including the present) that governed this Country. The First was the Soulbury (/Jennings) Constitution that lasted for less than 15 years, and then the Republican Constitution of 1972 during the regime of Prime Minister Sirimao Bandaranaike that had a similar life span until it was superseded by the present Constitution enacted during the early regime of President JR JayEwardena. The last one, despite numerous amendments from time to time, [has been in force for] nearly 40 years, despite the fact that it was referred to as “Bahubhhootha Vyawasthawa” (nonsensical or mad constitution) by President Chandrika Bandaranaike. However, the number amendments effected over the years indicated that all was not well during its life span. It also perhaps reflects a general belief among the past politicians that the problem is with the dancing floor than with the dancer!.
A Question from one Sanjay Gunawardena, 12 February 2021:
“Thank you for this great article Dr Roberts.[i] Has anyone got a picture or a painting of the Old Windmill which has been in the Galle Fort. This has been mentioned E.F.C Ludowyk’s book Long Afternoons in Colonial Ceylon. If you can please share an image, it will be much appreciated. Thank you.
A Response from Hemantha Situge: “Lyn Ludo says the windmill was one of the five landmarks that crowned the Fort. It was erected during British times. I have seen two photographs which I have not copied.”[ii]