Indo-Aryan migration; Re:descent of the Sinhalese

Jan Filipsky filipsky at SITE.CAS.CZ
Mon Mar 23 09:55:57 UTC 1998

>S Krishna <mahadevasiva at HOTMAIL.COM> wrote:

>> 2. Page 115 makes the claim( un referenced) that the earliest settlers
>> of Srilanka came from Gujarat. This is something I find strange, since
>> all texts that I know off talk about descent of the Sinhalese from
>> East Indians i.e. Bengalis/Oriyas/Biharis; some people also claim that
>> the name "Sinhala" is from Vijaya Sinha, the king who sailed with 700
>> men from Tamralipti in Bengal to Srilanka to establish a kingdom. Has
>> anybody seen this Gujarati origin in any other text?
Narayan S. Raja wrote:
>A few years ago I was reading a lot of books about
>the ancient history of Tamils and also of Sri Lanka.
>While less frequent than the "East India" theory, I did
>also encounter statements that the ancestors of today's
>Sinhalas came from Gujarat.  Unfortunately, I can't
>cite the references.
Just two relevant extracts:
"According to the Mahavansa, the most important of the early Ceylonese
chronicles, Indo-Aryans had made their way along the coast of India to
Sri Lanka by about the fifth century B.C. ... evidence seems to indicate
that one wave of the initial migration was from north-west India. The
Mahavansa itself seems to provide evidence that settlers arrived from the
north-eastern parts of India too."
Chandra Richard de Silva: Sri Lanka. A History, Vikas, New Delhi 1987, 4th
impression, 1991, pp. 18-19
:The original home of the first Indo-Aryan immigrants to Sri Lanka was
probably north-west India and the Indus region. There was, very likelz, a
later immigration from the east around Bengal and Orissa.
K.M. de Silva: A History of Sri Lanka, C. Hurst & Co., London 1981, 2nd
impression, OUP in arrangement with C. Hurts, Delhi 1984, p. 3.
Hope this clarifies the point.
Jan Filipsky, Oriental Institute, Pod vodarenskou vezi 4, 182 08  Praha 8
phone 004202 6605 3729
e-mail <filipsky at>
private: U Pentlovky 466/7, 181 00 Praha 8 - Troja
phone 004202 855 74 53

More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list