Dutch period in Sri Lanka

The Dutch ruled the coastal strip of Sri Lanka (or Ceylon as it was then known) for a long period from1640 to 1796 and made many contributions to the culture and social sphere of the land. One of the lasting contributions they made was in the field of architecture. Although the Dutch followed a liberal and easy-going lifestyle they led a very disciplined and orderly pattern in their day-to-day life. These characteristics manifested in their designs, particularly in construction and edifices. The Dutch followed a laid-back lifestyle but were very methodical and far thinking in everything they did. They always had very reverential feelings about their motherland and invariably used their traditional or religious nomenclature to name these buildings. Therefore strength, aesthetics, pride, safety, and comfort were factors that were imbued in these monumental edifices. Massive gables and towering obelisks, wide walled structures, large airy windows, and high roofs were common factors that were instituted in all their constructions. These Dutch edifices have influenced the architectural trends on the island and now stand sentinel to the glory of the Dutch period in Sri Lanka.

Ceylon as it was then known