GOLD IN SRI LANKA .
Recently there was a Gold rush at Kelaniya river, not too far away from Colombo.Gold is mentioned in the Chronicles even during the time of Dutugemunu[ ] where Gold Ingots the size of span along with the silver and copper were discovered and reported to the King. This helped to finance the building of the Mahaseya. Gold ingots the size of span in mentioned in Mahavansa The largest gold ingot recorded in 1872 called Holterman Nugget was 4 feet 4 inches by 2 feet 2 inches and average thickness was 4 inches and weighed 630 pounds.
Cast Ingot from Abeyagiri Excavations.
The largest cast Ingot of gold of Sri Lanka was of the 7-8 Cent AD and found during CCF excavations at Abeygiri is also shown.this is about 4 inches diameter.
Gold Rush- 2 Cent BC.
The location of Gold ingot finds during Dutugemunu period is recorded in the Mahavansa chapter 28 verse 13 and in the Thupavansa chapter 71 . This was perhaps for the knowledge of the future generation to come.
‘ In a north-easterly direction from the city, at a distance of three yojanas near Acaraviyya- gama, on a plain covering sixteen Karishas of land there appeared nuggets of gold of different sizes; the greatest measured a span, the least were of a finger measure’.
Yonas is a measure of lenght and karisha is measure of area[2.5 acres].According to Mr CW Niicholas Acaravitthigama or Avuruvitigama which was 3 yojanas or 12 Gav [20-30 miles ] north east of Anurhadapura; the place would have been would have been in the area Ratmalegavehera-Kabittigollava.The map of this area is shown. This area is the catchments area of Ma-oya that feeds the Padaviya resovoir. An ancient written description of the Mahaseya refers to a village of Rambewa,where the gold was from carts that broke down due to the weight of the God Given Gold was been transported in seven carts after having been unearthed from Rapathwila.
The 19 Cent AD Maha-oya Gold Rush.
Mr Edward Gunawardane paper article about a gold rush at Mahaoya in 1850’s from History of Ceylon Police’ Times of Ceylon 1938.British seaman named Bradly who had experience of gold mining in California and Australia was struck with the by the similarity of land in Ceylon to other Auri-ferous [gold bearing] districts decided to go prospecting for gold. He produced gold dust from an area forty miles from Colombo in the Maha-oya. The gold rush was on and the Government had to control with a Government gazette of March 1854 for issue of licence .But fever and floods put an end to this soon.
Maha-oya if I am correct is the one that flows past Pinnawela Elephant Sanctuary. It starts in the hill of Dolosbage and flows past Mavanalle, Allawwa, Dirrulla and fall into the sea at Kochikade.Dosolbage is the areafull of waterfall and has one over 200 metre fall. Very Scenic country off the beaten track just one and half hour drive from Colombo.
According to the Gem & Jewellary Authority gold though not in large quantities , Horana, the vicinity of Nilwala -ganaga, Akuressa and Deniyaya have gold deposits . Their Assay Office has revealed that sand samples taken from Deniyaya contains gold. Soft sand in gem mines and rivers bottoms contain not only gold but high value Titanium and Uranium.
There is a mineralized belt 10 miles wide and 250 miles long from Seruwawila to Ambalantota. It is interesting because it end at the famous Rumassala with its red earth where no plants thrive. They say it is alien soil from a meteor. Luckily for us two plates the Highland series and the Vijayan series are clashing there and we have many small tremors. One such earth quake had diverted the Mahaweli, which passed past the Seruwawila Stupa some time back. 7 Million tons of Magnetite ore lies up to three hundred feet deep. rich in Iron 40-98 % and Sulphides of Copper [Chalcopyritem, Pyrrhotite and Pyrite, Silver, Bismuth, Zinc,Mica and Nickle Pentlandite rich in Cobalt The copper in the Ore at Seruwila is around 1:3 and the amount in the Arippu area is about 68,000 Tons.
Recent Gold Finds – Dr Prasan Fransis.Daily News 13/11/2013
Analysis of a Copper Coin.
But they have analysed some Pollonnaruva Coins of Parakranmabahu I that contains 74 % of Cu,9 % of AU and 1,6 % of Gold.Can this be from Seruwawila deposits. Just think of the Gold that may have laying at the very bottom of river that flow in these areas if gold is available in these soils.