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Sinhapura or Singhapura (Sanskrit, "Lion City") was the capital of a kingdom in Kalinga in what is now Odisha in India, and later capital of Kalinga itself. It has been tentatively identified with modern Singapuram, a village near Srikakulam.[1]

The Mahavamsa tells of Sinhapura's foundation by Singhabahu, whose mother was a princess of Kalinga.[1] It was said that Singhabahu was sent on exile from Singhapura and moved to an uninhabited part of the forest. He cleared the land and settled down to rule a new kingdom based on Singhapura.[2] The town is named by Sinhalese chronicles in connection with Prince Vijaya (c. 543-505 BC), the first recorded king of Sri Lanka.[3] Vijaya's brother Sumitta became a king of Sinhala of Kalinga. When Vijaya died with no heir, Sumitta's son Panduvasdeva was sent from Sinhapura to Sri Lanka, where he was crowned king.

The Matharas ruled in Kalinga before the arrival of the Gangas in the 4th or 5th century AD, with their capital at Sinhapura. The first king of the Matharas occupied the Mahendra region, but his successor extended his rule to the Sinhapura region, and the later king Ananta Saktivarman transferred the capital to Sinhapura. A 5th century copper plate charter issued by Maharaja Satrudamanadeva was issued from Sinhapura, and is similar to charters of the Matharas, but his family cannot be made out. He may have been a subordinate ruler to the king of Kalinga.[4]

The Varman kings of Bengal claim descent from the Yadava dynasty of Sinhapura. Most likely they came to Bengal with Karna, whose father had conquered Kalinga and who in turn attacked southeast Bengal, then remained and created an independent state.[5] A rock inscription made by Nissanka Malla of Sri Lanka at Dambulla mentions that he is of the Kalinga Dynasty and a descendant from the race of King Vijaya. Another inscription at Ruwanwelisaya describes him as being a member of a royal family of Kalinga, born at Sinhapura.[6]

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  1. ^ a b R.C. Majumdar (1996). Outline of the history of Kaliṅga. Asian Educational Services. p. 6. ISBN 81-206-1194-2. 
  2. ^ S. Krishnaswami Aiyangar (2004). Some Contributions of South India to Indian Culture. Asian Educational Services. p. 75. ISBN 81-206-0999-9. 
  3. ^ Harihar Panda (2007). Professor H.C. Raychaudhuri, as a historian. Northern Book Centre. p. 112. ISBN 81-7211-210-6. 
  4. ^ Snigdha Tripathy, Indian Council of Historical Research (1998). Inscriptions of Orissa: Circa 5th-8th centuries A.D. Motilal Banarsidass Publ. p. 26. ISBN 81-208-1077-5. 
  5. ^ Nagendra Kr. Singh (2003). Encyclopaedia Of Bangladesh (Set Of 30 Vols.). Anmol Publications PVT. LTD. p. 22. ISBN 81-261-1390-1. 
  6. ^ Rasanayagam, C.; Aiyangar, Sakkottai Krishnaswami (1993). Ancient Jaffna. Asian Educational Services. pp. 322, 323. ISBN 81-206-0210-2. Retrieved 2009-04-11. 

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