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Stories Behind Names of Places in Sri Lanka: KUKULEGAMA – by Dr. Nimal Sedera

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Source: Dæhæna – Radio 4EB Sri Lankan Group – Monthly e-Newsletter – April 2022

Stories Behind Names of Places in Sri Lanka: KUKULEGAMA - by Dr. Nimal SederaKukulegama is in the Sabaragamuwa province. “kukula” is the Sinhala word for cock bird. The female “HEN” is called “KIKILI”. So the name of this village is based on an interesting story behind a sport that still prevails in Sri Lanka. This sport, very popular in many Asian countries in the olden days, is banned by law in many countries including in Sri Lanka, to protect the innocent creatures.

“Kukul pora” COCK FIGHTS were a popular sport in Sri lanka during the time of our Kings. The royal blessing was received for this sport and even Kings have attended to watch these fights. Training the cock bird, ROOSTER, was a special art, and needed talent and skill. There were special people to train these roosters. The roosters were fed with special food and were kept isolated under strict security and care.

The cock fighting was not only an art but was a gamble like the horse racing or the dog racing. Even today, heavy betting occurs when such fights are held in illicit venues in Sri Lanka. There are special varieties of cock birds bred for fighting. “Vadiga” is supposed to be the best at cock fights. They are strong, light in weight and best in height.

At the time of King Kirthi Sri Rajasinghe, there lived a famous man for ”cock fighting meets”. He was from “PARAGAMA’. This “cock fighting meet” received so much publicity, even the King decided to a attend the event. This made the event quite grand and there was very heavy betting. Even the King enjoyed the game and placed bets for the fighting roosters of the Paragama trainer. His roosters won the fights and the King was so happy with the talent and the skill of Paragama, the King gifted him the village he was born. Thereafter people called it “Kukulegama” (the village of the Roosters).

Dr. Nimal Sedera

Dr. Nimal Sedera
Dr. Nimal Sedera is a journalist, poet, motivational speaker
and an author of over 70 books.

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