Rama And Sita Rama was a brave and honourable prince who lived-History of Sri Lanka

Rama And Sita Rama was a brave and honourable prince who lived  

about three thousand years ago, in 
that part of Northern India which is now called Oudh. All the people of Oudh loved him for his courage, his wisdom, and his gentleness towards them. But through his stepmother's jealousy and cunning he was unjustly banished for fourteen years from his father's kingdom. Rama's bride was the beautiful princess Sita, the daughter of a friendly king. many princes had wished to marry her that a great competition in arms was held, and Sita was to be the bride of the most worthy. Rama won the prize by taking up and bending a huge bow that no other man could even raise from the ground. 

With his bride, the beautiful princess Sita, and Lakshmana, his favourite brother, Ramatravelled south wards, visiting sacred places in the jungles of Central India, where pious brahmana used to live far away from the busy and noisy world. brought to him about a terrible race of demons, called Rakshasas, who had the power of appearing in different shapes when they pleased, and who were giving much trouble to the pious hermits. The two brothers would continually fight the Rakshasas and drive them away. At length, Rama came in his wanderings to a pleasant forest on the banks of the river Godavari, and here the exiles lived happily

for some time. But in this very forest there dwelt a number of Rakshasas and the report of Rama's doings
and of the Princess Sita's beauty, came to the ears of Ravana, the ten-necked king of the Rakshasas. Ravana's chief city was Lankapura, inthe island of Lanka, as Ceylon was then called, and he made up his mind to carry Sita to Lanka, and there to make her his Queen. He could not do this by force as Sita was too carefully guarded by her husband and his brother, but by a clever trick, he at last succeeded. One day there came near Rama's forest-dwelling wonderfully beautiful deer, each of his horns tipped with a bright sapphire, and his skin shining like polished gold. Sita was attracted by the unusual beauty of the deer and begged Rama to get it for her.WAS being played by the Rakshasas, but casita wished so much to have the deer, he went after it. leaving Lakshmana in charge of the
cottage.The deer, which was really a Rakshasa in disguise, took Rama far away, but when it was at last shot down it imitated Rama's voice and called aloud for help. Theory was heard in the cottage, and Sita believing that Rama was in danger forced Lakshmanaagainst his will to go to his brother thus left alone, and was easily carried away by
the Rakshasa kingBut she knew that Rama would follow tosave her, and as the ten-necked demon-kingbore her through the air, she dropped herJewels one by one to the ground, so that Ramamight know where she was taken. Thus itwas he found the way to her, and the king ofthe vultures, who had tried to save Sita and- She was was wounded to death in doing so, told Ramahow Ravana had carried Sita away to Lanka.Now Lanka was an island in the middle of the ocean, and to get across from India Ramahad to get the help of the king of tlie Monkeys,who was the chief king in South India. Thiskng gave orders to Hanuman, one of theWisest of the Monkey chiefs. and Hanumanboldly but secretly went across to Sita inLanka with a message from Rama, and brought
back news of her; but so fond of mischief washe that, before leaving Lanka, he set fire to
Ravana's city and destroyed a large partof it.Rama and his new friends then crossed overto Lanka.
too, brought stones and trees from the hillsand the forests and threw them into the sea.
ln this way was formed-so the story tells the passage now known as Adam 's Bridge;and the armies of Rama soon came betore Lankapura, the golden city of Lanka.indeed a glorious city, built among high moun-tains, and defended by seven walls one withinthe other,-the first wall being of iro, the nextof stone, and the innermost of shining gold. Thecity had splendid gates, broad and well-keptroads, beautiful temples, palaces, and jewelled
courts, and gardens where grew countless treesladen with tempting fruit and with flowers de-lightful for beauty and fragrance.horses and elephants and chariots for use inwar; and skilled musicians to please, in tinies ofpeace, the demon-king and his multitudes of obedient subjects.proud of his royal city.But the hosts of Rama, though they badonly stones and trees for weapons, were toostrong for the demon-king, tbough the demonshad arrows, swords, and spears.other, Ravana's best captains were killed, allfighting bravely to the end. One of his brothersleft him to join the enemy. Still Ravanawould not yield. For ten years Lankapuraheld out. and then at last Ravana was killedby a charmed arrow which a friendly handgave Rama, and the city was taken.The conqueror afterwards returned to Indialeaving Ravana's brother, who had joinedRama to govern Lanka.worshipped in Lanka as the god Vibhisana.And there are places in Ceylon which stillremind us of Rama's beautiful princess places with names like Sitawaka, Sita-kotuwa,Sita-ella.


More than two thousand years ago, there lived in Northern India a king whose name was Sinha-bahu. He was so-called because his father was said to have been a Sinha, or lion; which means only that the father was a bold, bad man, of lower rank than the princess whom he married; or that he belonged to a different
race. ln the same way, we must understand that the vultures, monkeys, bears, and demons spoke of before were only tribes of men so named by u prouder race eldest son of Sinha-bahu was prince Vijaya, As Vijaya was to be king when his father died, he should have been a kind and well-behaved prince, but unfortunately he wasquite the opposite. father much trouble.pany of seven hundred young men as wicked as himself, and with them continually ill-treated the people of the country. The people complained to the king, and more than once the
king warned his son that such conduct was dangerous.The company took no notice of the king's warnings. At last, the people could no longer bear the wickedness of the prince, and coming to the king in large numbers they demanded that his evil deeds gave hisHe got together a com-But Vijaya and his lawless

The king did Vijaya should be put to death.

not wish to do that, but something had to be done; so he took Vijaya and his seven hundred men, had the half of each man's head shavedas a sign of disgrace, and sent them away in a large ship to go wherever they could find a home away from his country.As Vijaya sailed southwards along with the coast of India, searching for a place where he couldsettle, he began to see how foolish it was tolive a lawless life. He was afraid to remain long at any town on the Indian coast, becausehe could not trust his men; their wicked deeds would lead to quarrels, and the strange people they met would not hesitate to kill them.he sailed on till they came to Lanka, where they landed on a wild and lonely spot, nearwhat is now the town of Puttalam. They had had a long voyage, and were utterly worn outwith sea sickness and the troubles of their journey. It was very pleasant for them now tolie down and rest on firm land again. When they rose from the ground they found that the red-dish soil had stained the palms of their hauds. For this reason they are said to have called the place Tambapann, copper-coloured.
We may notice here that afterwards the whole island was known by this name, 7amba-panni, got to know about Ceylon, they changed 7am-bapanni into Taprobane, But the name Ceylon comes from Sinhala-wipe,-the island of the Sinhala or lion people. Vijaya and his follow-
ers were the first Sinhalese.

So When the old Greeks and Romans

Though when the Sinhalese landed they saw no human beings anywhere near, there were plenty of people living in the island. These people were naturally afraid to come out from their hiding places in the jungles till they had found out whether the newcomers would do them harm. One dáy, a dog was seen byone of Vijaya's company, and he followed it, thinking very wisely that where there were
dogs there must also be men and women living Now Vijaya had given orders that his men were to keep together, for this was a strang country and he did not know what dangers
there might be. But the man who followed thee dog was too inquisitive to obey orders, and he went on till he came to a tank near which hesaw a woman sitting and spinning thread. As she appeared from her dress and occupation tobe a religious woman, he thought she was not likely to harm him. He bathed in the tank,
and began to pluck some roots for his food. Then suddenly, he found himself caught by thewoman, and in spite of all his cries and prayers, he was thrown into a cave under the tank. In the same way she managed to imprison everyone of Vijaya 's seven hundred men. no religious woman, but a native princess, one of the demons (Hakshasas) who at that time were believed to inhabit Lanka.was Kuveni.She wasHer name When Vijaya found that his men had gone out and did not return, he was alarmed, and arming himself went to look for them. He too came to the place where his followers had been captured, and there he found foot-prints which all led into the tank; but there wereno footprints to show that any man bad come out. Kuveni also was sitting there as before,spinning thread under the shade of a banyan tree.He at once guessed that she was aRakshasa and that she had taken his men.Woman," said he, "hast thou seen my atten-dants?" What need hast thou, Prince, ofattendats?" she replied. Vijaya was surprised that the woman knew his rank, and was now quite sure that she was a demon. He caught her by the neck and threatened to kill her with his sword if she did not give him backhis men. She promnised to do so if he wouldmake her his queen. This he did, and there Was great rejoicing when the seven hundred men met their prince again.

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