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(c. 3rd century BC–10th century AD) Sinhalese kingdom centred at Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka. Though plagued by invasions from southern India (which took actual control of the kingdom several times) and internal strife among warring clans, the kingdom of Anuradhapura developed a high degree of culture. Its complex irrigation system is often considered its major achievement. The modern city of Anuradhapura (pop. 2001 prelim.: 56,632) contains vast Buddhist ruins and a bo tree grown from a slip of the tree under which the historical Buddha is said to have reached Enlightenment.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Anuradhapura, visit Britannica.com.