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Sinha is a Sanskrit term originates in the Indian subcontinent, common in India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan, covering south Asia. It comes from the Sanskrit word "Siṃha" ('ng' sound), which means lion.
In Sri Lanka, the term 'Sinha' (or Siha / Sinhe / Singhe / Singha / Singho) have commonly been used by the Sinhalese (or Sinhala). When it comes to the term 'Sinhala' itself, the first part of the word, 'Sinha' stands for lion while 'la' or 'le' stands for blood, giving the meaning 'Lions blood'. The word Simhmam (or Singam / Singham / Singhai / Singai) is the Sri Lankan Tamil derivative. In northern and middle part of India as well as southern India Sinhraj/Sinharaj/Sinharaja or Rajasinha is also used, having the meaning Lion king or leo king.
The more common surname Singh in India has same root. Jayasinghe and other surnames like 'Wijesinghe', 'Weerasingha', 'Edirisinghe', 'Singaiariyan' in Sri Lanka may also share this same root.
Notable destinations named after Sinha
- Sinhalaya – Name of the Kingdom of Sri Lanka before the invasion period in 1505 and after the independence from 1948 to 1950's.
- Sigiriya – Short name derives from 'Sinha Giriya' giving the meaning "The rocky place of lions".
- Singapore – Singapore's name comes from 'Singa Pura' / 'Sinha Pure' which means Lion City in Sanskrit before 1819.
- Kumar, Ashwani (2008). Community Warriors: State, Peasants and Caste Armies in Bihar. University of California Press. p. 195. ISBN 978-1-84331-709-8.
- Inden, Ronald B. (1976). Marriage and Rank in Bengali Culture: A History of Caste and Clan in Middle Period Bengal. University of California Press. p. 40. ISBN 978-0-52002-569-1.