Wednesday, April 24, 2013

SandaKada Pahana "taken" from Sri Lanka

Moonstone Polonaruwa period.
Moonstone (SandaKada Pahana) "taken" from Sri Lanka by a British Planter in the 1950's is sold  for GBP 500,000.  The Moonstone had been given to Bronwen Hickmotts parents by a Tea Planter from Sri Lanka.  Mrs Hickmott used the 1300 year old moonstone as doorstep at her home in Exeter, Devon - affectionately calling it 'the pebble'. This particular moonstone has been dated to belong to the Anuradhapura period.  

Anuradhapura period moonstones can be identified by having four animals in the third band: elephants, lions, horses, and bulls. These four animals follow each other in a procession symbolizing the four stages in life: growth, energy, power and forbearance.  The Polonnaruwa period
Nissanka Mallas Lion Throne
Moonstones do not have the bull, possibly because of Hindu/Chola influence. Some of the Polonaruwa moonstones dont have the lion as well. 
My theory is that these moonstones without a lion (and bull) are from the latter part of the Polonaruwa period.  That is when the Kalinga influence on Polonnaruwa increased and ended up with Nissanka Malla, a non Sri Lankan from Sinhapura in Kalinga (Orissa).  Its likely that Nissanka Malla and the other Kalinga affiliated Kings who also claimed the Lion as their symbol, removed the lions from the Moonstones used as door steps.

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