King Parakramabahu statue – Polonnaruwa


The King Parakramabahu statue is an excellent statue overlooking the extensive Parakrama Samudra Reservoir at the ancient city of Polonnaruwa. The figure is found in the region of the Pothgul Vihara complex and was constructed by King Parakramabahu I. Seldom it is assumed that the Parakramabahu statue is a portraiture of the noble king. Moreover, at times it is thought to be that of a sage, Pulathi Rishi statue. The figure itself is shaped into a giant rock during the 12th Century AD. It is one of the most well-made stone statues referring to this age. Close to twelve feet tall, this sculpture is of a man with a grave but a wise appearance by half-closed eyes and a sad smile as he holds from what most think is a manuscript he has in his arms at around chest height.
Man is bare-chested but for a thread thrown over his left shoulder. His load is borne by one of his feet somewhat of both. Archaeologist Prof. Senarath Paranavithana concludes that this statue is an expression of power and nobility, whatever unique identity of the person and whether or not it is an official portrait of someone of the time. It is amongst the many cryptic and thought-provoking sculptures from Polonnaruwa.

More details

King Parakramabahu's statue of 3.4 m or 11ft 2 in high dates back to the 12th century. With the destiny of the Anuradhapura period, the kingdom was assigned to Polonnaruwa. After that, another reign was formed under King Vijayabahu. King Parakramabahu was the individual who assembled the whole metropolis with infrastructure and all other establishments. The statue embellishes the majesty and severe countenance of the King, who holds a lengthy object in his hands. It appears like an Ola leaves the textbook (Pus kola pota). The King, with a long beard, large stomach but solid shoulders and hair are unique features of the statue. Found in the Poth Gul Vehera, furthermore considered as a former Library of old Sri Lanka, the statute broadly sustains the interpretation. The round-shaped shoulders show that the King is almost strong. The right leg is relaxed, and the left is supported by it. The King is simply wearing the cloth.



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