“But where the stirring crowd, the voice of strife,
The glow of action, and the thrill of life?”
It may not perhaps be altogether useless to ask, How many of our countrymen have reflected seriously upon their condition and their prospects? How many have cast a thought beyond the events of yesterday or the business of to-day? We fear, not many. We are too content to move in the same mechanical circle of samenesses to-day as yesterday, to square our ideas with those of other men, to believe and to speak according to dictates; that we should entertain the remotest idea of comparing our Past with our Present, so as to arrive at a probable conception of the Future. Our life-time passes with the dreamy knowledge that we are, and but little beyond that. But What may we be? What ought we to be? Are questions which are never engendered in our minds. For any one original thought on the subject which may exist, we may be dwelling in Fairyland.
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Veins of Influence: Colonial Sri Lanka (Ceylon) in Early Photographs and Collections, by Shalini Amerasinghe Ganendra
[This book is a pioneering monograph that brings a rich array of early and previously unpublished images of Sri Lanka (Ceylon) into the global discourse of photography, pairing a striking lens of visual appreciation with distinctly humanizing perspectives.
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Suren Ratwatte, whose chosen title is “A Fitting Memorial” ... in tracing the history of Colombo’s War Cenotaph built a hundred years ago ... presented on 28th May 2023 … while the highlighting is the work of The Editor, Thuppahi
In 1923 Ceylon was a different place to the Sri Lanka of today. The land was ruled by the Empire’s masters, ensconced in their ‘Britishers Only’ Colombo Club near Galle Face Green. The Ceylonese had, however, formed their own rival Orient Club located near the racecourse.
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Richard Simon has produced “A definitive social, cultural and political history of S. Thomas’ College, Sri Lanka”
S. Thomas’ College, founded by the first Anglican Bishop of Colombo in 1851, is arguably the greatest and most influential boys’ school in modern Lankan history. An acknowledged nursery of the country’s elite, this tropical facsimile of an English public school has produced four Prime Ministers and hundreds of other figures of national importance, wielding an enduring influence on the society, culture and politics of the country.
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Item circulated by Ranjith Sirimanne, a Royalist
If the pipers were playing “Green Hills of Tyrol”, then a group of Sri Lankans would be playing a tune about a Swiss gentleman fighting against the Austrians, composed by an Italian and played on an instrument proliferated from Scotland but left behind by the Romans as a joke…… using Bagpipes possibly made in Pakistan.
Can’t get much more International than that?
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Adilah Ismail in the Sunday Times, 7 June 2015, where the title is “Colourful history of a historian” … with highlighting imposed by the Editor Thuppahi viz, Roberts himself
Looking back on his ‘going-down memory lane interviews’ with retired Britishers and Sri Lankans who served mainly in the Ceylon Civil Service, Michael Roberts who was in Sri Lanka recently, talks to Adilah Ismail about the beginnings of a passion.
In Colombo last week: Michael Roberts. Pic by M.A. Pushpa Kumara
It’s the late 1960s: On most Fridays, Michael Roberts would make his way towards Colombo from Peradeniya,  recording equipment balanced at his feet and his bag filled with assorted clothes strapped to the back of his trusty scooter. Navigating the sharp curves and turns on his two wheeler, once in Colombo, he would spend his weekend sprinting from one interview to another.
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KKS Perera in E-Lanka, 15 October 2023 , where his title is “More on Senanayakes and Cricket”
Dr. Michael Roberts’ enthralling exploration of the Senanayake family and their ties to cricket in last week’s E-lanka provided the inspiration for me to craft this anecdotal script.
Don Spater Senanayake, was the son of the lesser-known Don Bartholomeus, a native of the picturesque town of Mahiyangana. According to family lore that has been passed down through the generations, the Senanayake family’s roots can be traced back to an ancient era—the Anuradhapura period, specifically between AD 253 and 266. The tale recounts that during this time, a benevolent King dispatched a delegation from Mahiyangana, entrusted with a sacred Bo sapling. Their mission was to plant this revered sapling at a hallowed location in Attanagalle. The delegation journeyed toward their destination, they decided to rest for the night and carefully placed the Bo sapling in a specially chosen spot. The next morning, to their astonishment, they discovered that the sapling had taken root, defying all expectations. This miraculous event led to the christening of the place as “Bodhi-tale,” signifying the spot where the Bo sapling had firmly established itself. Over time, this name evolved into “Bothale.”
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