Aluvihare monastery, (near) Matale, Central Province, SL

Raw data

"Aluvihare is one of the most important cultural sites in Sri Lanka, for it was here in the 1st century BC that the Buddhist doctrines - comprising the Tripitikaya or “three baskets of the law,” along with the commentaries - were first transcribed after having been handed down orally for several centuries. This transcription was carried out for fear that the doctrine would be lost during the upheaval caused by repeated South Indian invasions.

It is said that 500 scholarly monks congregated at Aluvihare to perform the onerous task of first reciting the doctrines and agreeing on an acceptable version before writing them down. The library at Aluvihare, which had safely housed the volumes of this precious manuscript for so many centuries, was totally destroyed by the British during the Matale Rebellion of 1848. Along with it went much of the rest of the temple complex.

Aluvihare has many monastery caves, with ancient inscriptions, comparatively modern wall and ceiling paintings with images of the Buddha. The main cave has a 10m long reclining statue of the Buddha, together with standing and seated images. If you climb up to the dagoba on top of the rock just beyond the cave temples, you can see the excellent views of the dramatic topography of the North Central Province, with its expansive plain and scattered, blue-hued rock escarpments"

Input by: GitaG, Dec 09, 2012

Final data (and their sources)

Last updated: 01 Oct 2013

Lat/Long coordinates' accuracy:
The monastery in question is assumed to be situated actually no farther than 200 m from the point defined by the coordinates below.

Location of Aluvihare monastery, SL.

General location of the Aluvihare monastery, SL.
Lat 7.4971 Long 80.62194
Mapping & images: Falling Rain Genomics (, 2012.

Google Map link:,%20SL)&ll=7.4971,80.62194&spn=05.0,05.0&t=k&hl=en

Final data - explanatory notes

1. Monastery's name

  • Aluvihare Monastery

2. Monastery's modern country & province

  • Sri Lanka: Central Province

3. Monastery's alternative/historical names

4. Monastery's lat/long coordinates

  • Approx., Lat 7.4971 Long 80.62194 - based on visual identification of the site in maps and Panoramio photographs, - tmciolek, 12 Dec 2012.
  • Aluwihare or Aluvihare village - Lat 7.5139 Long 80.6214 -

5. Other known nearby Buddhist monasteries

  • [missing data]

6. Modern name of the known nearest city, town, or village

7. The settlement's alternative/historical names

8. The settlement's coordinates

9. Monastery's major Buddhist tradition

10. Monastery's Buddhist sub-tradition

11. Date-early

  • MBM chrono-tag: <=0200 - GitaG 10 Dec 2012

12. Date-intermediate

13. Date-late

  • MBM chrono-tag: 1200=> - tmciolek 13 Dec 2012
  • <=0200 0200-32c 0233-66c 0267-99c 0300-32c 0333-66c 0367-99c 0400-32c 0433-66c 0467-99c 0500-32c 0533-66c 0567-99c 0600-32c 0633-66c 0667-99c 0700-32c 0733-66c 0767-99c 0800-32c 0833-66c 0867-99c 0900-32c 0933-66c 0967-99c 1000-32c 1033-66c 1067-99c 1100-32c 1133-66c 1167-99c 1200=> dated-el

14. Details of contacts with other monasteries

  • [missing data]

15. Type of evidence regarding the monastery

  • [missing data]

Additional notes

17. Corrections & addenda to this page were kindly provided by

  • [missing data]

18. Known monks and nuns associated with this monastery

19. Available Printed Literature

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