Tea and the Ancient Culture of Sri Lanka

Tea was introduced to Sri Lanka in early 1800s in colonial era. Beginning of the commercial plantation created a different culture related to the plantations. Labours for these plantations were brought from South India and they were provided accommodations there.

When these Indian labour force build up their life here in the plantations, a separate culture is created with them. They were started to build shrines for their religious beliefs. Hinduism was widely spread around these estate areas as well in the nearby village areas too. Natives were also started to follow and visit the shrines. Along with these Hindu beliefs their cultural festival celebrations also came into the picture. Those festivals became the cultural function of the Sri Lankan culture.

Next one is their language. South Indian Tamil language became the one of Sri Lankan language with some minor modifications. Some words from native Sinhala language were mixed with Tamil language as it is same for the Sinhala language. Some food habits were also added to the native Sri Lankan culture with this Plantation culture. Native South Indian foods like Chapathi, Idli, Thosa, Wade and many more became the favourites of native Sinhalese people too.

The other thing is dress code of Indian people. It was also popularised among the natives. Saree and the Wetti is most common form of dress codes popular among them. Indian Jewelleries and accessories also added to the native culture with these plantations labour force. Traditional Indian dancing and dramas also another segment that came from the Indian people in Plantations.

Another thing is the frequent tea drinking habit of Sri Lankan people. With the plantation sector tea was became a regular good among Sri Lankan people. Small tea boutiques were very popularised among the villagers. Chatting and gossiping in the tea boutiques in the evening after the tired day was a relaxing activity for the villagers. In family gatherings and evening chats in households were corporate with a tea and a refreshment. Even without the sweeteners people tend to drink the tea whenever they are working in the fields. So tea became an important part of the Sri Lankans daily life style.

Not only among the villagers but also the rich people in the society take tea as a part of their life style. They have arranged high society tea parties as a gathering of their own members and those parties were arranged according to the European traditions. This was the improved and honourable version of chatty tea boutiques in villages. This has become a lengthy and interesting article even without discussing all the facts. Please keep visiting our blog for more interesting articles like this.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.