Sunday, July 25, 2010

The grave of Ehelepola at St. Andre Forest, Mauritius.



The following text is from an article by Durand Appuhamy (Negombo)/The Island)
and with extracts from his book,
The Rebels, Outlaws & Enemies to the British by M.A. Durand Appuhamy.

"Ehelapola died on the 4th of April 1829 "in consequence of an attack of dysentery after an illness of six days during which he was attended by the Medical Officer of Mauritius" (CO 54/105). He was aware of his approaching end and made a disposition of his property by will on the 2nd of April.
By his Will, he gave Dingiriya, his slave servant his freedom, all the goods and money which belonged to him and were at Mauritius. To Kedagamuwe Nileme and Dawgan-deniya Arachchy one hundred Spanish Dollars each and implored the British government to pardon them both and set them free. To Pilimatalawe he gave all his property and money which were in the custody of the Kandy Kachchery. To Don Bastian he gave 3555 Pagodas, his Sinhalese watch and carriage and the large ring set with diamonds. He also bestowed on Don Bastian all his landed property after the death of his sister. All the linen which were his wearing apparel were to be handed over to the Maligawa in Kandy.
He was cremated at St. Andre forest a quarter of a mile distance from the Powder Mills where the other Kandyan prisoners were imprisoned.
There is a square white monument in his honour. In the centre, there is a white granite block with the inscription which reads" sacred to the memory of Ehelapola Wijesoondra Wickramasinghe Chandrasekra Amerakoon Wahalanodianse, late First Adikar or Prime Minister to the King of Kandy, who died 4 April 1829, aged 57 years".
From the many stubs of burnt out candles on the spot, it is apparent that even today someone lights a candle there in memory of a man whose life was only so full of promise, but devoid of any achievement, and futile to the point that he lost his kith and kin, and died in exile an untried and unconvicted state prisoner, ennobled unto eternity in this monument in a foreign land. Who today will dare suggest that his ashes be brought back to this country and interred with the appropriate honours due to him? I do."

THIS LINK WILL SHOW YOU THE LOCATION OF THE ST. ANDRE FOREST...

16 comments:

Kirigalpoththa said...

I did not know this part of the history leading to Ehelepola's death. Thanks for the conclusive evidence too :)

Dee said...

Hi,
I live in Mauritius and didn't know where Ehelapola's grave site was located..
will be visiting it asap..
Dee

Dominic Sansoni said...

Hello K & Dee, yes, it was an interesting find, I had heard about it and was determined to find it. Dee - I like your bare bones blog!

Senani said...

Ehelepola village lies at the northern most end of the Knuckles range East of Pallepola on the Matale Dambulla road. I once visited it and was shown the foundations of the old Walauwa by the village headman. The village belonged to my grandfather (a nindagama) who inherited it through his ancestor Dullewe Disawa, brother-in-law of Ehelepola.

kuiya said...

I had the good fortune to go to this site when on a visit to Mauritius. I noticed that some locals had even placed flowers on the tomb, perhaps in veneration.

Raja Bandaranayake said...

Please refer to my book "Betwixt Isles: The Story of the Kandyan Prisoners in Mauritius" (Vijitha Yapa, Colombo, 2006) which describes in detail Ehelapola's life in Mauritius, including his abode, illness, last days, death and funeral rites, with photographs, lithograph and maps. In addition, the lives of the other State Prisoners are also dealt with. An interesting finding about the doctor who treated Ehelapola on his death-bed is also described. A translation of the book in Sinhala has been published just this year by the same publisher.

uditha said...

Great job.. Thanks for posting this to honor.


Dee.. It's on the way from Port Louis to North and just pass the Triolet junction. (Left side of the road) Hope u will visit there..

uditha said...

Great job. Thanks for posting this to honor.


Dee, You can find the place on the way from Port Louis to North just pass the Trio let junction. (Its on the left side of the road) Hope you will visit the place

Gibson & Hills Ltd said...

What is evident is that this site is sadly used for witchcraft. I spent my childhood and teenage in the village nearby & have known the grave.

You just have to cast a look. There are so many underwear there that you can open a lingerie shop. So bad.

Merl M said...

We have friends who are from Mauritius. Will telling them about our history in their country. I am sure they have no idea, or else they would have talked about it with us.MSM

Rajeeva Thambugala said...

I had the privilege of visiting this monument in Mauritius in 1996 while I was there on business. A Sri Lankan who lives there took me to this place. According to her there are Mauritians with Sri Lankan names living there. They are believed to be the decedents of Ehelapola Adikaram’s friends/servants who came with him.

wathu said...

I also visited same place, but not able to trace any decedents of Sri Lanka

Lanka said...

Hi, I am in Mauritius on a short visit and just went to see the tomb. Then I was looking for the village of Moulin a Poudre, where Ehelepola Nilame's residence is supposed to be and could not find it.
Can any one help me?
I will be happy to meet any Sri lankans living here. I am here till next Saturday.


Nalini Ball said...

Nali said.....
I am glad I got much information from my niece Sanjee. My grandfather Percivel Fritzroy Abeyakoon was from Hulangamuwa Walauwa Matale. I wonder how he is connected to Ehelepola .
Can anyone shed some light on it.







anju said...

He was 67 years when he died , not 57 years. because I've also visited this site in Mauritius.

Raja Bandaranayake said...

Ehelapola Maha Nilame was born in the year 1773, and died in April 1829. He was thus 56 or 57 years old at his death, depending on the month in which he was born. His age in given as 57 years on the monument, probably because he was born before April 1773, and it is customary to say that someone has reached his 57th year after his/her 56th birthday