Glossary

Baila

A form of dance music popular in Sri Lanka

Origin:

Portuguese, Sinhalese

By |March 20th, 2013||Comments Off

Bak

Bak poya is the full moon day in the lunar month of Bak (in April). Bak commemorates the second visit of the Lord Buddha to Sri Lanka which took place in the fifth year of his supreme enlightenment. Shops and businesses are closed on Poya days and the sale of alcohol and meat is forbidden.

There are twelve or thirteen poya days per year. Their names correspond to the Buddhist lunar months of the same name. They are VesākPosonEsalaNikiniBinaraVapIllUnduvapDuruthuNavamMedin and Bak.

If a month has two full moon days, the name of the second one is preceded by Adhi (meaning extra in Sinhala) as in Adhi Bak poya, etc.

Origin:

Pali, Sanskrit, Sinhalese

By |December 2nd, 2013||Comments Off

Bana

Buddhist sermon.

Origin:

Sinhalese

By |March 20th, 2013||Comments Off

Banian

Sleeveless undershirt

Origin:

Portuguese, Sinhalese

By |August 18th, 2013||Comments Off

Beedi

A thin Indian cigarette filled with tobacco flake and wrapped in a tendu or racemosa leaf tied with a string at one end

Origin:

Tamil

By |August 18th, 2013||Comments Off

Berber

Indigenous ethnic group in north Africa, west of the Nile Valley mostly found in Algeria and Morocco

Origin:

Arabic

By |August 18th, 2013||Comments Off

Betel leaf

Leaf of a vine valued both as a stimulant and for its medicinal properties. It is chewed with in a wrapped package with areca nut and mineral slaked lime.

Origin:

English

By |August 18th, 2013||Comments Off

Bhikkhu

Buddhist monk

Origin:

Sinhalese

By |August 19th, 2013||Comments Off

Binara

Binara poya is the full moon day in the lunar month of Binara (in September). Binara commemorates The Buddha’s visit to heaven to preach to his mother and celestial multitude. It also marks the establishment of the Bhikkhuni (nun’s) order.

There are twelve or thirteen poya days per year. Their names correspond to the Buddhist lunar months of the same name. They are VesākPosonEsalaNikiniBinaraVapIllUnduvapDuruthuNavamMedin and Bak.

If a month has two full moon days, the name of the second one is preceded by Adhi (meaning extra in Sinhala) as in Adhi Binara poya, etc.

Origin:

Pali, Sanskrit, Sinhalese

By |December 2nd, 2013||Comments Off

Bo or Bodhi tree

According to Buddhist tradition, a Bo tree, also called a Bodhi tree, is the sacred fig under which the Buddha sat when he attained Enlightenment (Bodhi) at Bodh Gaya (near Gaya, west-central Bihar state, India). A living tree at Anuradhapura Sri Lanka, said to have grown from a cutting from the original Bo tree, is believed to be the oldest planted tree with a recorded year of 288 BC.

Origin:

Sanskrit

By |September 24th, 2013||Comments Off

Bulath

Betel leaf used for chewing

Origin:

Sinhalese

By |August 19th, 2013||Comments Off

Bund

Raised embankment or wall separating paddy fields or reservoirs of water

Origin:

English

By |August 19th, 2013||Comments Off

Burgher

Eurasian ethnic group mainly from Sri Lanka consisting of male line descendants of European colonial powers which ruled the island from the 16th to 20th centuries

Origin:

Dutch, German, English

By |August 18th, 2013||Comments Off