The prized possessions of Sri Lanka – Museums in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is a country filled with history, where many kings ruled different parts of the island and established the main necessities. Every kingdom that ruled had a story, and the stories are preserved with evidence in each of the museums in Sri Lanka.

National Museum of Colombo

Built in the year 1877 and designed in an Italian architectural design, this museum is also called the Sri Lanka National Museum, as it is the largest in the country. It is maintained by the Department of National Museum.

The museum contains many assets that is of value to the Sri Lankan history; the regalia of the country – the Kandyan Monarchs including the throne and crown.

This museum is comprised of the Statue of Tara, the possessions of the last king of Kandy; the crown of jewels and throne. The ground floor showcased a historical sequence, and the upper floor thematically. The museum also has a library that is focussed on collecting local publications; one could find books on Arts, Natural Sciences, Periodicals, Government Publications, Directories, Law reports, Maps and Drawings, Stamps and postcards. It is known to be functioning as Sri Lanka’s unofficial library.

National Museum of Kandy

A significant and sacred place in Kandy is the Temple of the Tooth which, the National Museum is situated next to it in part of the former Royal Palace. The Palle Vahala building houses the primary exhibits which also was the King’s harem. The balance exhibits are placed in the main building. The display consists of weapons, jewellery, tools, and 5000 other artefacts that belong to the Kandy era that was from the 17th to the 19thCentury. The architectural features of the building are of the Kandy period.

National Maritime Museum – GalleNational Maritime Museum-001

Situated in the Galle Fort this Museum was opened in 1992. In 2004 the artefacts were destroyed by the Tsunami; the Netherlands Cultural Corporation Programme funded the project and reconstructed the Maritime Museum.

The artefacts in the museum are found through underwater explorations. The items that are showcased are; maps, naval craft, ropes, earthenware, beer mugs, smoking pipes, barrels, articles that contain information on guns and sailor shoes. Most of these items were found in shipwrecks in the sea off the southern coast and are perceived to be over 800 years old.

National Museum of Galle

The National Museum of Galle is the oldest building that the Dutch built inside the Galle Fort in Galle. This building was renovated by the Department of National Museums and was opened to the public in 1986. This museum holds a collection of exhibits from the Portuguese, Dutch and British time here in Sri Lanka. Segmented in to three galleries, collections containing in the first section are the area’s cottage industries; turtle shell jewellery manufacturing, Beeralu lace weaving, and wooden mask carving. A collection of furniture and weaponry that belong to the Dutch period contains in the second area. The “Sri Lanka and China friendship gallery” is showcased in the final section.

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