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Karava of Sri Lanka
Karava Main Flag.jpg
The Karava Maha Kodiya or main flag of the Karava Community. It depicts several traditional royal symbols. The original flag is illustrated under Karava Heraldry
Total population
4.8 million
Regions with significant populations
Sri Lanka, India, USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Germany, France
Sinhala, Tamil, English, Marathi, Telugu
Buddhism, Roman Catholicism, Hinduism, Protestantism
Related ethnic groups
Sinhalese, Tamils, Kshatriyas, Kurukulams[disambiguation needed], Kauravas
A 19th-century representation of the Karava Makara Flag. The image of the mythical creature Makara is extensively used in Sri Lankan Karava architecture. This flag is one of the main flags still used by the Karavas at their ceremonies. The Mukkara Hatana, an ola leaf manuscript now in the British Museum states that King Parakramabahu IV granted it to the 'Karavas'
The Karava Sun and Moon Flag symbolising the Solar and Lunar Dynasty origins of the community. This flag is also one of the main flags still used by the Karavas at their ceremonies and is another flag referred to in the Mukkara Hatana as granted to the Karavas by King Parakramabahu IV. However the Mahabharata states that the epic Kauravas from whom some Karavas claim descent used flags with the sun, moon and stars in the great Mahabharata war. (some evidence of Karava royal associations predate the Western colonization of Sri Lanka. It is a misconception to say that the Karava rose to prominence by allying themselves with the British when most native government servants claimed to be govi)

Karava (pronounced Karaava) also Karave, Kara, Karavaa, Kaurava is a significant Sinhalese community. The Tamil equivalent is Karaiyar.


The origins of the term Karave also Kaurava or Kurukula are still debated. The first recorded instance is the Abhayagiri vihara terrace inscription dating from the 1st century BC denoting a 'Karava navika'.[1][1] One school of thought maintains that the Karava are the traditional coastal folk[2] citing the similarity between the terms for sea-water (Kara Diya in Sinhalese) and Tamil Karaiyar denoting 'coast men'.[3] Another contends that it was the traditional military or warrior caste of Sri Lanka. Although no specefic mention of such a caste is extant in pre-colonial literature, there is mention of Kshatriya, foreign warriors and mercenaries throughout history.[4][5][6][7][8] A third opinion is that it stems from the Kauravas of Indian Folklore, which is also the commomon origin theory of the coastal Gavara and Kavarai folk of Andra Pradesh . The 'Vesmuhunu' (mask),[9] 'Devil dance'[10] and 'Kolam' tradition (masked drama/comedy) of the southern coast, while indicating a strong indigenous and a unique tradition, also indicate some affinity with the Karavali of Kerala and Karnataka[11][12][13][2]. Also, an ancient north Indian ship owning and navigating caste was known as Kharva[14] The Mahabarta epic recognized the coastal districts as a distinct community with their chiefs who took part in the epic war (Mahabharata, Book 3, Chapter 51[15]). Karava communities are scattered throughout Sri Lanka including the interior but are predominantly resident on the southern, western and northern coastal districts of Sri Lanka.

Karava myth as well as historical manuscripts such as the Mukkara Hatana,[16] and royal grants[17] indicate that there was also several migrations from Kuru Mandalam Coromandal coast of South India.[8] The Aluth (new) and Parana (old) Kuru korales (provinces) denote such cultural acknowledgement and royal patronage. The migration is by no means one way as there is some evidence of emigration to India[18] Related communities in India are found north of Tanjore in Tamil Nadu well into the Andhra Pradesh coastal areas. All Karava communities throughout Sri Lanka also share a common origin myth that claims an ultimate origin from the Kuru (kingdom) and the epic Kauravas of the Mahabharata. In modern Sri Lanka, occupationally its members include the foremost professionals, capitalists and politicians of Sri Lanka as well as large numbers of wage earners, carpenters, fishermen and farmers. The Karavas came into contact with the Colonial powers ( Portuguese, Dutch and English) before the rural interiors and assimilated (through choice or force) with regards to education, dress, religion and customs and exploited the new opportunities in commercial enterprise earlier than other communities. The Karavas were the most successful at this as all communities strove to mordernize and still do.[19][20][21] Today, many Karava are mixed/married with other communities and castes, particularly the Govigama [22]

Traditional status[edit]

The Karavas were the traditional fisher-folk,[23] naval warriors[3][7][24][25] and seafaring merchants of the Sri Lankan coast.[26][27][28][29][30][31][32][33][34] They were also among the pioneering planters and industrialists of the colonial period. It is a misconception to say that the Karavas rose in prominence allying themselves to the colonial rulers when most natives serving the British and Dutch administration were from the newly elevated farmer caste. However it may be that they remained loyal to the king of their region after the Wijayaba Kollaya. Also, it was our kings who were among the first to convert to Christianity; Prince Jugo Bandara,[35] Don Manoel Jayaweera Astana, Don João Karalliyadde Bandãra,[36] Don Juan Dharmapala Peria Bandara, Don Phillip Yamasingha Bandar, Mahapatabandige Donna Catherina Kusumadevi, Don John Wimaladharmasurya,[37][38][39] Prince Dom Afonso,[40] Dom João, Dom Luis and Dom Philip Nikapitiye Bandara.[41] The clan has also claimed to be the naval and military caste of Sri Lanka and were also mercenaries to kings in India and Sri Lanka.[42][43] Their chiefs were referred to as Patabenda in Sinhala and Patangatim in Tamil, lived in the coast and ports of Sri Lanka[44][45][3][46][4][5]. Although conclusive evidence is lacking that they were the ruling class of the medieval era, there are historical documents including the 'Pujavaliya', 'mukara hatana' and Portuguese state records that suggest their importance to the rulers[47][48][46][49][50][51][52]

It is also interesting to remind that Arya Chakravarti / Kalinga Magha's invasions were repulsed in Panadura (naval battle), Dematagoda, Negambo and Chilaw, Matale being the only exception. The successful naval raids and battles that resulted in the capture of six ships and the destruction of twenty others, one of the earliest of its kind against a European colonial navy in the South Asian waters, (yet stands as a feat so extremely rare unlike land victories) was carried out by King(sub) Antonio Baretto Kuruwita Rala (Prince of Uva), the Regent of King Senerat and relative of Queen Mahapatabendige Donna Catherina Kusuma Devi of the royal lineage. This ultimate warrior's land victories include the expulsion of the Portuguese from the Sabaragamuwa province and the Batticaloa fort. He also fought the Portuguese-Senarat alliance when the king refused to liberate the coastal districts and for three years liberated/controlled a vast area[53][54][55][56][6] There is ample evidence to show that the Island's kings took a keen interest in shipbuilding, naval and trading activities and the Island's shipbuilders built some of the largest ships of their day.[57][58][59][60] Maha Parakramabahu also respected the rights of the coastal and ship owning merchants.[7]

All major Karava settlements traditionally had service castes such as barbers, drummers, potters, washermen, etc. settled in satellite communities around them. The presence of such settlements is still evident despite the social changes and inter-caste migrations of the past century. The Karavas were one of the few Sri Lankan communities traditionally entitled to use flags. British Government Agents studying Sri Lankan flags have noted that not a single flag could be found even in the residences of Kandyan chiefs as even they were not entitled to use flags. These observations, made in the 19th Century (after 1815), do take into account that the Kandyans were living under a Sinhala Royal dominion that reserved the right to bear flags to the Palace.[46] At the same time, clans and families of most other caste groups in the lowlands did not bear flags. It is also certain that these flags depicting royal emblems existed before the archaeological excavations of Anuradhapura began in the latter part of the British and post British era, substantiating many of the depictions.[61][62][63][64][65] A large number of these Karava flags have survived the ravages of time and many are illustrated in E. W. Perera’s book Sinhalese Banners and Standards. However, despite the extent of the collection, they are scattered throughout the book and not in a special chapter. As such, their significance is missed by most readers. The sun, moon, stars, elephant, fish, white shield, pearl umbrella, swords, lotuses, and ship all of which were royal symbols in Sri Lanka’s past.

Royal insignia[edit]

Although the Karava community describes the usage of royal insignia, there is no mention in the entire 2500 year odd history of the Sinhalese race that the Karava or for that matter any other caste (other than kshatarya) had any claims to the throne of Sri Lanka except for the 'Rajavaliya'.[66] The origin of the term 'Royal Insignia' is therefore hotly debated among scholars and considered a modern affectation of gentility. However, it is certain that these insignia of royal emblems existed before the archaeological excavations of Anuradhapura began in the latter part of the British and post British era, substantiating them.[61][62][63][64][65][67] The symbolic use of the conch shell in all things sacred and regal cannot be denied, so too was the tying of the royal forehead plate; Nalapata because they are mentioned in the 'Rajavaliya'. Ancient rock inscriptions, copper plates & coin engravings are now available trough archaeological excavations depicting the emblems of the ruling dynasty.[68] These customs are common to all regions of South Asia and beyond, not just Sri Lanka (whose royal dynasties originate mostly from India in any case) and scientifically valid. Likewise the sun and the moon, pearl umbrella are traditional royal items in Sri Lanka's past and throughout the region.[69][70][71][72][73]

For the past 1,700 years the sacred Tooth Relic of Gautama Buddha was a possession of the ruling king/dynasty of that period, whosoever possessed this was acknowledged as the rightful ruler of Lanka and whoever won the throne usually came to possess it. Upon each change of capital, a new palace was built to enshrine the Relic. Finally, in 1591 it was brought to Kandy where it is at present, in the Temple of the Tooth. Contrary to the current practice, the tooth relic is not exclusive to any caste or gender as that tarnishes the doctrine of Buddhism and becomes a tool of oppression. Even if we overlook the possibility of some royalty stemming from this Suryawamsa warrior/mercenary community,[3][6][7][42][74][75] what is certain is that the Abayagiri Viharaya was the early custodian of the Tooth Relic[76][77] and the Karava Navika held a distinguished & privileged position in that Viharaya.[1][78] Again during the Polonaruwa period, the custodians of the relic was the Veleikkara regiment,[79][80] its one time commander was Kurukulattaraiya; 'the man with the golden anklet'[81][82] Also, the Island's last north Indian (Aryan) king Nissankamalla disliked the Govi aspirations,[83] Maha Parakramabahu too, taxed them heavily[84] Therefore, it is clear that the present ideology and situation surrounding the relic was different in the past.

The possession of the tooth relic alone was however not sufficient for the general turned king; Don John Wimaladharmasurya, but the 'royalty' of Mahapatabandige Donna Catherina Kusumadevi. Additionally, there had been many instances in history where there had been several simultaneous kingdoms, the 'rightful' not possessing the 'Tooth', while many not so 'rightful' had ruled, e.g., Rajarata-Ruhuna-Dakkhinadesa, Kashyapa-Mogallana, Alakeshwara-Buwanekabahu V, Kotte-Sitawaka-Kandy, colonial. Even in the land-locked Kandyan kingdom 'Unambuwe' a son of a concubine of some considerable background from the vicinity of the 'Tooth' was deemed not of 'royalty', hence a Tamil of royalty was imported from Madurai. This last Kandyan royal dynasty (four kings) of Nayake origin was from the Balija caste.

The oldest Buddhist sect in Sri Lanka, the Siam Nikaya (estd. 19 July 1753) are the current custodians of the Tooth Relic. As of 1764, the Siyam Nikaya controversially restricted higher ordination only to the Radala and Govigama castes, Sitinamaluwe Dhammajoti (Durawa) being the last nongovigama monk receive its Higher ordination. This conspiracy festered within the Siyam nikaya itself, where Moratota Dhammakkandha, Mahaayaka of Kandy, with the help of the last two Kandyan Tamil kings took possession of the Siri Paadha shrine and the retinue villages from the low country Mahanayaka Karatota Dhammaranma and appointed a rival[85][86]

Apart from flags, the Karavas were the only community in Sri Lanka entitled to the use of the said 'royal insignia'. Insignia such as the pearl umbrella, flags, swords, trident, yak tail whisks, lighted flame torches and drums were previously widely used by the Karavas at their weddings and funerals. Such usage is now greatly reduced but even now it is not unusual to see these royal symbols used even at funerals of extremely impoverished Karavas. See Karava Heraldry

Across the Palk Strait, the kinsmen of the Karavas too have used similar insignia in the past. H. R. Pate describes a wedding as follows: "A peculiar feature of the wedding is the procession to the bride’s house with virudus or banners supposed to be the insignia of the Kingly ancestors of the race. The emblems consist of 21 flags embroidered with representations of various objects, animate and inanimate, such as a Snake, a Peacock, a Palmyra, a Chank, the Sun and Moon an Elephant. A Fish and so on. In addition to these a large Umbrella, a Shield and other trappings are carried. The bridegroom wears a costume called KAPA resembling the state robes of Jathi Thalavi More and white cloths are spread before hi in his path". (Madras District Gazetteer 123 & 124)

With the fall of Sri Lankan kingdoms under Dutch and British colonialism the Karavas kept to their occupations such as deep sea fishing, cultivation, and trading for survival.

Origin with the Kuru[edit]

In Sri Lanka, some Karave claim Kuru - an Indo-Aryan Kshatriya tribe from northern India - ancestry, thus assimilating with the Sinhalese people.

Karavas, south of Colombo, along with all other Sinhalese communities, the Karavas are Sinhala speakers and are devoted Catholics and Buddhists with very little vestige of their former Hindu religion. With Salagama and Durave, they make a sizable number of people among the coastal Sinhalese sub group. The Karaiyars are an ancient seafaring, warrior caste native to Tamil Nadu, India to the North Eastern parts of Sri Lanka. Karave and Karaiyer are both equivalent caste groups in Sri Lanka. The name Karaiyar means "coastal men" in Tamil. They are of mostly Hindu origin.


See Timeline of the Karavas

Flags and insignia[edit]

See Karava Heraldry

Social position[edit]

The Karave community of today is made up of many Clans as indicated by their hereditary ancestral names also known as "Ge" names and Clan names. In Sri Lanka they are an influential and prominent caste among the majority Sinhalese. They are now said to be behind the majority Govigama.

Most Karave were forcibly converted to the Catholic religion during the Portuguese period. (See Patabendige for Portuguese conversion strategies). During the British period several Karava families, along with families from other communities achieved elite status by participating in the colonial economic activities. Although the strides made thus far by a few families are impressive, and many members of the community are leading professionals and businessmen, a great many of them now languish at the bottom of the economic order, deprived of opportunities for progress[citation needed].

Political influence[edit]

The democratic system of Sri Lanka, where the main political parties are run as family organizations, dominated by the elite Radala and Govigama castes has prevented Karava and other minority community politicians from ever reaching the top or gaining political influence. Young leaders rising up against the system have been continually eliminated by the Sri Lankan state since the 1970s.

Non–Govigama representation in Parliament has steadily declined since independence and representation of non-Govigama castes are well below their population percentages. [7]. Caste representation in the Cabinet is limited to a few very visible, but unconcerned and disconnected members from a few leading castes. However none of these representatives are known to have ever spoken on behalf of their respective communities or done anything constructive for the progress of these communities.

Whereas Karave are very vocal about their Sinhala Buddhist identity and drive the nationalistic political parties such as the SLFP and JVP, both aligned to Sinhala nationalism. Some sociologists have commented that the current civil war in Sri Lanka has become a vehicle by which both the Karave have sought to marginalize the post-colonial elites by taking extremely partisan but opposite views[citation needed].

Ancestral names[edit]

Most of the Karavas in Sri Lanka belong to one or more of the Suriya clans Weerasuriya, Wickramasuriya, Kurukulasuriya, Warnakulasuriya, Mihindukulasuriya, Bharathakulasuriya, Manukulasuriya, Vijayakulasuriya or Arasakulasuriya which appear to indicate distinct streams of migrations. Other clans are Vadugas, Koon Karavas (such as Samarakoon, Weerakoon etc.), and Konda Karavas (such as WeeraKonda, Konda Perumal Árachchigé etc.). Additionally they also bear Gé names.

Gé names among the Sinhhala speaking population are traditional hereditary family names. They denote a person's ancestry, caste, social status of an illustrious ancestor or the village of origin. The Karava traditionally used the title or clan name before the 18th century emergence of the govi. Hence, 'Patabandi' became 'Patabadige'. These names predate the 16th century European colonisation of Sri Lanka. Gé names precede an individual’s personal name unlike a surname which follows one’s personal name. As such it is important to understand the historical significance of these ancient Ge’ names vis-à-vis the 20th century British period acquired surnames. The Karavas Ge’ names overwhelmingly show a traditional military, royal or marine heritage. Some of the more frequently encountered Karava Ge names are:

An ancient flag of the Karava Arasakularatne clan.
The battle flag of Sri Lanka, captured by the British from Sri Wikrama Rajasinghe’s army. It displays the kettle drum which was beaten before battles and five weapons (panchaudha). In the past, a medallion with panchaudha symbols used to be tied on Karava infants for protection. This is a heathen practice that still survives in rural Sri Lanka among many impoverished communities.
  • Arachchige: From the house of the village headman.
  • Arasa Marakkalage: Royal Mariner
  • Baduge: Variant form of Vaduge
  • Hennedige: Armoured militiaman
  • Hewage: Soldier
  • Kankanamage: Supervising of workmen (of military weapons production)
  • Kurukula (Suriya): Descending from the Kuru clan
  • Marakkalage: Ship owner or captain (see illustration of Marakkalam vessel on right), Arab Muslim traders got this name due the ships being called Marakkar in India ans (Sri Lanka). As such Hindu mariners of Karnataka are also referred the same. Arabs did not call themselves Marakkar.
  • Malimage: Sailor, Captain or Ship owner
  • Mestrige: Artisan
  • Olupathage : ruler of the house of the lotus flower (etymology: Olu-Pathi-Ge)
  • Patabendige: Honorific name/title given to local headman
  • Thantrige: Master, Priest, Expert (in military strategy)
  • Vaduge: Carpenter, ship & boat builder and/or descendant of Vadugar
  • Varnakula Suriya: God Varuna Sea God[87] (alternately Colour-Caste)
  • Arasanilayitta: Possessing kingly status [8]
  • Vidanage: Civil officer
  • veyhenage...
  • Vedage: Expert in the Vedas or Ayurveda (More likely the latter as 'Veda' in Sinhalese is grammatically aligned to the root denoting Ayurveda and not the Broader Indian Veda learnings. Hence 'Vedage' probably refers to the local herbal healer / medicine man in the Ayurveda tradition.
  • Egodage: Great warriors in the sea and land ( Modern day Military Commandos )
  • Aditya: Denotes a suryawamsa king found throughout India, but exclusive to the Karavas in Sri Lanka, recorded as Ditta or Adicca in some ancient texts. (The first dynasty of the similar linguistic culture to Sinhalese, the thousand cluster islands; the Maldives was Aditya)

Apart from Ge names, they also use Iberian-derived surnames such as De Silva, De Mel, Fernando, Perera and Mendis subsequent to conversion along with many kings and aristocrats of the period.

Rarer occurrences of such surnames are found in Almeida, De La Salle, De Mazenod, Peris and others who can often directly trace lineage back to a member of the Portuguese colonials in the country in the 16th century.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Plate No.94 | Inscriptions of Sri Lanka". Royalasiaticsociety.lk. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  2. ^ Kotte Kingdom's principal imports: A history of Sri Lanka by K. M. De Silva, p.90
  3. ^ a b c Sri Lanka and the Maldive Islands, By Chandra Richard De Silva, p.111 & 137
  4. ^ Pre-Christian era coins depict the ruling dynastic fish symbol of the Kataragama Ksatriya kings
  5. ^ Other royal emblems/coins from 250BC (depicting Bo tree, fish, conch)
  6. ^ a b THE ROYAL EMBLEM OF ANCIENT SINHALA KINGS (king Sadhathissa; brother of king Dutugamunu)
  7. ^ a b c d SINHALESE NAVAL POWER, C. W. Nicholas (1958)
  8. ^ a b Some warriors of the past
  9. ^ A collection of traditional masks
  10. ^ Exorcism rituals of the South coast
  11. ^ Gunasekara, Naomi (2002-09-22). "Unmasking a craft". The Sunday Times. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  12. ^ Lankan influences on 'Bhuta kola' tradition, under heading: 'Not native to Tulu..'
  13. ^ Bailey, Mark S; de Silva; H Janaka (2006-12-23). "Sri Lankan sanni masks: an ancient classification of disease". BMJ. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  14. ^ Essays In Goan History edited by Teotónio R. de Souza, p.4&5
  15. ^ "Sinhala Kingdom - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia". En.wikipedia.org. 2012-06-03. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  16. ^ Descendants of the Mukara-Hatana
  17. ^ Weerasuriya, A. S. F.; Venthar, Kurukula. "Kurukula Charithaya—Part II". Retrieved 2008-11-07. 
  18. ^ Coast Andhra Gavara (Gauravar/Kauravar) migration myth
  19. ^ Sri Lankan Mudaliyars
  20. ^ "Sri Lankan Sinhalese Family Gene". Rootsweb.ancestry.com. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  21. ^ By Renee. "Family #1001 Bandaranaike". Rootsweb.ancestry.com. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  22. ^ "Karava of Sri Lanka - Marriage proposals". Karava.org. 1935-04-17. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  23. ^ World's fastest traditional sailing canoe: The Bala (power) Oruwa
  24. ^ Aditya and the Burmese campaign (Geiger on the Singhalese raid of Lower Burma 1164-5)
  25. ^ Parakramabahu's Adigar-Admiral
  26. ^ A detailed study of the 'Outrigger'; MAHA ORUWA
  27. ^ Now extinct trading & pilgrim vessel: Maha-Oruwa/Yatra-Oruwa
  28. ^ Another form of the extinct MAHA ORUVA
  29. ^ The craftsmanship of the vessel (under heading: 'Design and Purpose..')
  30. ^ Structural Details of the Vessel (Ships and the Development of Maritime Technology on the Indian Ocean By Ruth Barnes, David Parkin, p. 162)
  31. ^ Shipping Merchant Don Bastian (Mudaliyar) & the Saddharma Yuktika Nikaya
  32. ^ The Perera Abeywardena Family and P&O Shipping
  33. ^ Last voyage of the Maha-Oruwa
  34. ^ The extinct medieval ship: Marakkar
  35. ^ "Catholic Church in Sri Lanka - A History in Outline by W.L.A.Don Peter - The Portuguese Period". Xoomer.virgilio.it. 1999-08-23. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  36. ^ Chronological list of Sri Lankan kings
  37. ^ "Don Phillip, Don John and Dona Catherina of Sri Lanka". Lankalibrary.com. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  38. ^ "Midwee05". Infolanka.com. 2002-03-06. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  39. ^ "Sri Lankan Politics in Foucs". www.manthree.com. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  40. ^ History of Trincomalee
  41. ^ By Dr. K. D. Paranavitana (2007-07-22). "A church in Lisbon and the Black Prince of Lanka". Sundaytimes.lk. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  42. ^ a b 'Nayek of Tanjore sends an army of Vadugas with King Varuna Gulata (Varnakula Aditya/Nilayitta) of the Karieas to assist'; The temporal and spiritual conquest of Ceylon, Fernão de Queyroz, p. 468
  43. ^ "RANK STRUCTURE OF OFFICERS IN SINHALA ARMIES. « Ancient Sri Lankan coins". Sirimunasiha.wordpress.com. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  44. ^ 'Patangatin chiefs'; Re-Exploring the Links: History and Constructed Histories Between Portugal, Jorge Manuel Flores, Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, p. 76
  45. ^ Royal grant to a port Patangatin, Kingdom of Jaffanapatam, P.E. Pieris, p. 25-28
  46. ^ a b c "The Karave Flag - Piv". Defonseka.com. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  47. ^ "Kaurava Princes and Princesses of the Past". Defonseka.com. 1932-08-15. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  48. ^ "Karava of Sri Lanka - Marakkalage (Naval)". Karava.org. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  49. ^ The Swords of the Karava subkings
  50. ^ Similar sword hilt of Anuradhapura
  51. ^ Pre-Portuguese straight blades
  52. ^ The importance of Karava king to the ruling monarch from other local sources
  53. ^ Description of the Great and Most Famous Isle of Ceylon, Philip Baldaeus, p. 693-7
  54. ^ Ceylon of the Early Travellers, by H. A. J. Hulugalle (1965); 'Kuruwita Rala, a relative of our last royal Queen'
  55. ^ The naval encounters of Prince of Ouva
  56. ^ An historical, political, and statistical account of Ceylon and ..., Volume 1, By Charles Pridham , p. 109-11
  57. ^ Ship building in ancient Sri Lanka
  58. ^ Sailing craft in ancient Sri Lanka
  59. ^ International relations in ancient and medieval Sri Lanka
  60. ^ Sri Lanka and South-East Asia: Political, Religious and Cultural Relations, W. M. Sirisena, p. 32 (Ships: 200 feet, 700 crew)
  61. ^ a b http://www.karava.org/yahoo_site_admin/assets/images/Karava_Arasakularatne_Flag.31850142_large.jpg
  62. ^ a b "The Bodhi Tree Symbol on Coins of Sri Lanka « Ancient Sri Lankan coins". Sirimunasiha.wordpress.com. 2010-08-13. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  63. ^ a b "Karava of Sri Lanka - karava flags". Karava.org. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  64. ^ a b http://sirimunasiha.files.wordpress.com/2011/05/sevul-kodia-of-king-mahasen.jpg
  65. ^ a b http://sirimunasiha.wordpress.com/2011/08/09/nature-of-ancient-sri-lankan-coinage/
  66. ^ http://www.lankalibrary.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=1220
  67. ^ http://karava.org/royal_symbols_of_sri_lanka
  68. ^ Royal emblems/coins from 250BC (depicting Bo tree, fish, conch)
  69. ^ Shades of the Royal Umbrella
  70. ^ Traditional Royal Insignia & Ceremonies
  71. ^ Royal emblems and Lord Buddha
  72. ^ Mutukuda (Pearl-Umbrella) from local sources
  73. ^ Chank/Conch on ancient coins
  74. ^ Gajabahu
  75. ^ Sapumal Kumaraya/Bhuvanekabahu VI
  76. ^ The Splendor of Sri Lanka - Abayagiriya
  77. ^ Abode of the Sacred Tooth Relic
  78. ^ The ancient 'Kaurava Pavilion' at Anuradhapura
  79. ^ Temple of the Tooth in Polonnaruwa
  80. ^ Sacred Island
  81. ^ Epigraphica Indica – Vol. 21, part 5, No.38, p.220-50
  82. ^ The Karava of Ceylon, M.D.Raghavan, p.9-10
  83. ^ Polonnaruwa Galpotha Inscription of King Nissankamalla
  84. ^ Economic Policies Of Parakramabahu, The Great: What Lessons Are There For Today? by W.A. Wijewardena
  85. ^ Buddhism in Sinhalese Society, 1750-1900: A Study of Religious Revival and.... By Kitsiri Malalgoda, p. 84-87 & 91
  86. ^ Two Great Needs of Buddhists
  87. ^ God Varuna/Upuluvan: An original guardian deity of the Island (A history of Sri Lanka by K. M. De Silva, pp.51,54,92,93)
  88. ^ http://www.thesundayleader.lk/archive/20060709/review.htm
  89. ^ http://www.dhammaweb.net/dhamma_news/view.php?id=24
  90. ^ http://www.dailynews.lk/2003/09/08/new28.html
  91. ^ http://www.sundayobserver.lk/2009/05/03/spe04.asp
  92. ^ Fonseka, the political arriviste–a historical irony
  • ^ RAGHAVAN, M. D., The Karava of Ceylon: Society and Culture, K. V. G. de Silva, 1961.
  • ^ Caste Conflict and Elite Formation, The Rise of the Karava Elite in Sri Lanka 1500–1931. Michael Roberts 1982, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press. ISBN 81-7013-139-1
  • Madras District Gazetteer—Tinnevelly Volume I 1917 H. R. Pate
  • ^ Social Change in Nineteenth Century Ceylon. Patrick Peebles. 1995, Navrang ISBN 81-7013-141-3.

External links[edit]