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Coat of arms of Sri Lanka
Coat of arms of Sri Lanka.svg
Details
Armiger The Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
Adopted 1972
Crest The Dharmacakra
Escutcheon Gold lion passant, holding a sword in its right fore paw on a maroon background surrounded by golden petals of a water lily
Supporters Golden symbols of the Sun and the Moon
Other elements A traditional grain vase
Use On all Acts of Parliament; the cover of all Sri Lankan passports; various government ministries and departments; adapted for the reverse of coins

The Coat of arms of Sri Lanka is the official coat of arms of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. It is used by the Sri Lankan Government in connection with the administration and government of the country. The current coat of arms has being in use since 1972.

The coat of arms features a gold lion passant, holding a sword in its right fore paw (the same lion from the flag of Sri Lanka) in the centre on a maroon background surrounded by golden petals of a Blue Lotus the national flower of the country. This is placed on top of a traditional grain vase that sprouts sheaves of rice grains that circle the border reflecting prosperity.

The crest is the Dharmacakra, symbolizing the country's foremost place for Buddhism and just rule. Traditional Sinhalese heraldic symbols for the sun and the moon form the supporters.

Contents

History

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Portuguese period in Ceylon

The Portuguese had a coat of arms for their occupied territory in Sri Lanka, around 1505–1658.

Design

It has an Elephant in the foreground with palm trees around it and high mountains in the background.

Dutch period in Ceylon

It is not known when the coat of arms for the Dutch occupied territory of Sri Lanka was adopted. The coat of arms is from a manuscript dating from 1717 to 1720.

Design

The arms is very similar to the previous Portuguese one with a modified design. It show the geography of the island with mountains and palm trees, with an elephant and cinnamon bales, and two small shields. The elephant is used because it is a animal used for work on the island and it symbolises strength. In front of the elephant are three bales of cinnamon, used for it was the main export product at the time, and the elephant holds a cinnamon branch in its trunk.[1]

British Ceylon

Before independence, Ceylon used the coat of arms of the United Kingdom as the imperial emblem and a unique shield for the colony.

Design

This contained a Sri Lankan elephant and Coconut trees and later a stupa.

Dominion of Ceylon

When Ceylon was granted independence from Britain as a dominion in 1948, the need of a new national emblem arose. A committee was named in order to create a national emblem. According to its recommendation a national emblem was adopted in 1952. The island had been a British Crown Colony since 1802.

Design

The coat of arms was not strictly in the heraldic tradition, however was granted by the College of Arms in 1954. It was derived from the Royal Banner of the Kandyan Kingdom. It largely reflected the Buddhist traditions of the Sinhalese people. At its center had a disk with a gold lion passant holding a sword (here called the Ceylon lion) in its right fore paw, on a maroon background, was taken from the Royal Banner of the Kandyan Kingdom. Around it were the golden petals of a water lily and topped with the crown ensigning the roundel is called the Ceylon crown; it follows the design of the crown worn by the kings of Kandy. The crown apparently symbolised Queen Elizabeth as Head of State of Ceylon, and it disappeared from the country's arms after change of status to a republic.[2]

Sri Lanka

The present Coat of Arms of the Government of Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka was created in 1972 with the ideas and guidance of Nissanka Wijeyeratne.[3] At the time, he was Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and Chairman of the National Emblem and Flag Design Committee. The designer of the Coat of Arms was Venerable Mapalagama Wipulasara Maha Thera.[4]

Design

The coat of arms features a gold lion passant, holding a sword in its right fore paw (the same lion from the flag of Sri Lanka) in the centre on a maroon background surrounded by golden petals of a Blue Lotus the national flower of the country. This is placed on top of a traditional grain vase that sprouts sheaves of rice grains that circle the border reflecting prosperity.

The crest is the Dharmacakra, symbolizing the country's foremost place for Buddhism and just rule. Traditional Sinhalese heraldic symbols for the sun and the moon form the supporters.

Historical Coat of arms

Coat of Arms of Sri Lanka Description Dates Used
Sri Lanka.PNG Coat of arms of the Portuguese period in Ceylon. around 1505–1658
Coat of arms Ceylon dutch colony.jpg Coat of arms of the Dutch period in Ceylon. 1602–1796
Coat of arms Ceylon british colony.jpg Arms used in the early stages of British Ceylon.
Crest bcey.gif Arms used in the later stages of British Ceylon. 1875–1948
Blank.png No Coat of arms of The Dominion of Ceylon. 1948–1952
Coat of Arms Ceylon dominion.svg Coat of arms of The Dominion of Ceylon. 1952–1972

See also

References

External links


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