Barbara Crossette, in New York Times way back in 1988 …. where the title runs thus “Colombo Journal; A Proud People, Scattered and Forgotten by Time”
In Sri Lanka, a country torn by violence, the holiday season is perhaps most poignant for a small minority that has not been part of the ethnic strife at all. They call themselves the Dutch Burghers, but the name, most generously defined, can cover a rich ethnic mix of Portuguese, Dutch, British and other Europeans who settled here over several centuries.
The Burghers, who are Christians, also number among themselves the Eurasian descendants of Europeans and high-born Sinhalese or, less often, Tamils. Ethnic Sinhalese account for about 74 percent of the Sri Lankan population of about 16 million; Tamils, 18 percent. Continue reading