Home/Active Page

B/N 988 Saparagamu Maha Saman Devala Esala Perahera

The Philatelic Bureau of the Department Posts has issued a new postage stamp in the denomination of Rs. 15.00 to mark the SabaragamuwaMahaSamanDevalaEsalaPerahera on 02nd September, 2020.

Date of Issue September 02nd, 2020
Denomination Rs.15.00
Catalogue No: RCSL 2396
Stamp Designer P.IsuruChathuranga
Stamp Size: 60mm x 30mm
Sheet Composition: 20 stamps per sheet

First Day Cover

SabaragamuwaMahaSamanDevalaya, which entwines folklore, history and a heritage, is one of the most historic and prominent religious establishments in Sri Lanka. The Devalaya was built by Aryakamadeva, a court minister under King Parakramabahu II who ruled in the Dambadeniya era, on behalf of the king. This was done as a vow to erect a shrine in the name of god Saman, if his effort to excavate gems were successful. After the establishment of the Devalaya the king also dedicated lands and servants to the maintainance and development of the institution. Later King Buwanekabahu I also developed the Devalaya. The Devalaya was again expanded in the reign of King Parakramabahu I of Kotte. King Parakramabahu also allocated more lands and placed an inscription on the premises.

King Rajasinha I of Sitawake also renovated the Devalaya. He also brought the tooth Relic that had been hidden at the Delgamuwa Temple in Kuruwita, to the SamanViharaya, which is situated near the Devalaya, and held a DaladaPerehara for 11 consecutive years, combining both institutions.

After the collapse of the Sitawaka kingdom, the Portuguese invaded Saparagamu and destroyed both SamanVehera and SamanDevalaya. King Rajasinghe II who liberated the area, again rebuilt the Devalaya.

It is believed that the perehera of the SamanDevalaya began during the Dambadeniya era and this is the 795th time (2020) that the perehera is being held. However this is the first time that the perehera is being held as a state event. The processions go on for 15 days after KapSituveema, the custom of cutting and planting a young sanctified Rukattana tree (referred to as the Kap tree), as a tribute to god Saman. It is expected that god Saman would grant his blessings and protection for all devotees and to the Perahera.

There are three pereheras;

  1. VeediPerehera - VeediPerahera also known as DewalePerehera is held for a another five days, following the KumbalPerehara.
  2. MahaPerahera - This is also held for five days and features five processions — DaladaPerahera, PaththiniPerahera, BisoPerahera, Kumara Perahera and the Perahera of SamanDeviyo.

The festivities end with Diya Kapeema, held on a full moon Poya Day.

The perehera is renowned for its pageantry and MahamabaKolama is a unique feature of this perehera. Dikgeinetuma was another unique event but it is no longer practiced. However the perehera is renowned, all over the world as a unique cultural event that features many traditions unique to Sabaragamuwa.

Pura Vidya Chakrawarthi - EllawalaMedhanandaThero

All rights reserved. All right to identify the Department of Posts as the Author and designer of this Bulleting has been asserted in accordance with the Copyright, Design and Patents Act 1988.No part to this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by and means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise) without the prior permission from the publisher. Any person who does and unauthorized act in relation to this publication may be liable to criminal prosecution and civil claims for damages.