Category Archives: ancient civilisations

Frank Rees George: Intrepid Cameleer & Pioneer in Outback Australia

Rob George to Anne Scherer, 25 September 2022

Hi Anne, Michael has passed on your request to me and I am delighted to respond!  George was the camel driver on a geological expedition in 1905/6 led by my great uncle Frank Rees George that led ultimately to Frank’s death in Alice Springs in early 1906.  George wrote a letter to Frank’s mother, Ediva, (known as Nora) and my great grandmother, explaining to her the details of Frank’s incredible journey and his final hours.  It’s a wonderful letter made even more poignant by the fact that it was penned by a man who cannot have had a lot of education.  Please find a copy of the letter attached together with a photo that I think is George with the camels on the expedition.  The letter was originally in a box of family memorabilia that we carted around rural South Australia (my father was a bank manager so we moved frequently) and which he donated to the State Archives in the mid 60’s.  The letter is available at the archives.

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Sunken Chinese Treasures found off Sumatra: Now Gifted Back to China

Ben Packham in The Australian, 16 August 2022.………… with highlighting imposed here by The Editor, Thuppahi

333 porcelain artefacts ­removed from a shipwreck will be returned to the Indonesian government after they were ­advertised online by a private ­seller in Perth.

The Tek Sing was packed with passengers and precious cargo when it hit a reef off the coast of Sumatra in 1822, sinking with an estimated 1500 people aboard.

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Roads and Bridges in Ancient Sri Lanka

Introduction by Gp Capt Kumar Kirinde [retd], SLAF … & crafted by Chamara Sumanapala, …. & presented in The Nation Sunday Print Edition, date not specified

Below is an article on roads and bridges in ancient Sri Lanka (Anuradhapura era). The article also talks about the major roads linking Anuradhapura with the ports of Dambakola Patuna (in Jaffna Peninsula), Mahatitta (near Mannar) and Gokanna (Trincomalee) and the road linking Anuradhapura with Magama (present day Tissamaharama) in Ruhuna.

 

Stone Bridge close to Mahakanadarawa Reservoir (Mihintale)
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Marvels of Sigiriya Rock Fortress in Sri Lanka

Lois L. Kersey, a “History Enthusiast” … whose choice of title ran thus: “Sigiriya: Views ofa Foreign History Enthusiast” …. see  https://www.quora.com/ (Post by Lois L. Kersey

You are looking at one of the greatest archaeological sites in the world called Sigiriya which is believed to be one of the palaces of Ravana. This amazing place located in Sri Lanka is like nothing in the world, that is why it is also called the 8th wonder of the world. Now you must be thinking that what is so special about this site. It’s actually a huge monolithic rock, about 660 feet tall, and you can see it has a flat top, as if someone cut it with a giant knife. At the top are incredible ruins that are extremely mysterious.

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“Ceylon” = A Superior Brand to “Sri Lanka”?

Denzel Perera in Sunday Times, where the title runs thus: “Destination Branding – Sri Lanka or Ceylon?

Sri Lanka was always known as Ceylon and the people of Sri Lanka were known as Ceylonese in the pre-independent era. Sandy beaches, wildlife, hills in the central region, archaeological sites, etc. have given Sri Lanka much more than needed to convert this paradise island into the most sought-after tourist destination. However, there seems to be a fundamental mistake that was done in changing the name of this paradise island from Ceylon to Sri Lanka. Today, our country has Ceylon Tea, Ceylon Cinnamon, Etc. which are unparallel and world-class in their quality. The term Ceylon is generally considered archaic, having been replaced by Sri Lanka, but it is still used in some contexts. At the same time, we are spending a colossal amount of money on establishing brands such as Sri Lankan Airlines, Sri Lankan Cricket, and Sri Lanka as a tourist destination.

 

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The Mahaweli Project: The Mother of All Development Schemes in Sri Lanka

Ajit Kanagasundaram

40 years have now elapsed since the launch of the accelerated Mahaweli project, so it is an opportune time to review what was done and the benefits and shortfalls of the project to the nation. This project was the culmination of a 50 yearlong process that started with the rehabilitate ancient irrigation works and settlement of the dry zone lands that was initiated by our first Prime Minister, DS Senanayake, when he was the Agriculture Minister in the State Council during the British Raj. After independence, this moved on to more ambitious projects building large multi-purpose schemes like Gal Oya and Uda Walawe culminating in the accelerated Mahaweli project.

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Was Sri Lanka an Agricultural Nation in Ancient Times?

Vinod Moonesinghe, in an original essay bearing the title  “Agricultural nation, a myth?” ……… … now reproduced with a different title and with highlIghting imposed by The Editor, ThuppaHI

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Vaddas, Rodiyo and Ahikuntakayo: Some Bibliographcal Items

LC Arulpragasam 2019 “The Veddas in the east of Ceylon in the 1950s,” 13 Oct 2019,https://thuppahis.com/2019/10/13/the-veddas-in-the-east-of-ceylon-in-the-1950s/

Michael Roberts 2017 The First Settlers and Their Claim to Ownership of Terrain. A Comparative excursion,” 18 January 2017, https://thuppahis.com/2017/01/18/the-first-settlers-and-their-claim-to-ownership-of-terrainstate-a-comparative-excursion/

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Remembering George Turnour: Scholar & Administrator Extraordinary

Hugh Karunanayake

Thirty seven years ago, on 13 April 1985, the British Prime Minister of the day  Mrs Margaret Thatcher during her visit to Sri Lanka to open the Victoria Dam, said  in an address to the Parliament of Sri Lanka  “The remains of an ancient civilization are visible in many parts of your island. Two thousand years ago, your irrigation system far exceeded in scale and sophistication anything existing in Europe. That great chronicle the Mahavamsa, has passed down to us the story of your island’s development.”

 The Mahavansa and the history it contained would probably  have been lost in the mists of antiquity if not for the  indefatigable efforts of a Civil Servant by the name George Turnour.

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Sandadas Coperahewa’s Lifework

A Bibliography of Published/Unpublished Work by Sandadas Coperahewa (1923 – 2022)


Books:
යුර ෝපා කලාරේ ලුහුඬු ඉතිහාසරේ සිංහල රපරැළිය හා යුර ෝපා කලා රහළ කලා සසදුව (1958)
[The Sinhala Translation of R.H. Wilenkski’s A Miniature History of European Art and a Comparative Study of European and Sinhalese Art]
 රෙරේ හිමි සෙරුව ( 1991) …. [A commemorative poem on Ven. Pamburana Metteyya Thera of Vajirarama]
 ජගේ කලාකරු කතන්ද – 1 : රලරයෝනාරදෝ දා වින්ි (1992)
 ජගේ කලාකරු කතන්ද – 2 : ෙයිකල් ඇන්ිරලෝ ( 1997)
 ජගේ කලාකරු කතන්ද – 3 : ෆාරයල් ( 1998) …………………. A series of books on World famous artists – Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael 

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