The sannasa (land grant) is engraved on both sides an oblong copper-plate. There are fifteen lines of text on the observe and a further fifteen lines on the reverse. Writing in the late 1920s, Codrington recorded that the plate “has for many years been in the possession of Mr W. P. Ranasinha, Notary Public”. The latter’s son – A.G. Ranasinha Esq., C.M.G., C.B.E. – lent it to an exhibition organised by the Historical Manuscripts Commission in 1952.


The sannasa records a grant of land to two Brahmans – one Potā Ojjhalun and his nephew Avuhaḷa Ojjhalun of the Śān̆ḍiḷya gotra. As the sannasa relates, these Brahmans served as chief purohita “until His Majesty our King Mahā Parākrama Bāhu…had worn the crown fifty-five times” (i.e. had reigned for fifty-five years). Kings of this period wore the state crown every year on the anniversary of their coronation, hence a king who wore the crown fifty-five times must have reigned for fifty-five years. In recognition of their service, the Brahmans received for their maintenance the village of Oruvaḷa in Aturugiri Kōralē. Subsequently another king made this village a perpetual dānakṣetra in favour of the nephew and also granted him another village in the neighbourhood. Avuhaḷa Ojjhalun, not content, applied either to the same king or to one of his successors for a copper-plate charter confirming that the land held by him was permanently declared a dānakṣetra subject to an annual payment of fifteen fanams to the god Vishṇu. In answer to this request, the present sannasa was issued by king Siri San̆gabo Śrī Parākrama Bāhu at Jayavarddhanapura Kōṭṭē in the fourth year of his reign.


Codrington identifies Mahā Parākrama Bāhu – the king served by the two Bhamans – as Parākrama Bāhu VI, who reigned from 1412 (or 1415, according to certain historical sources) until 1467 A.D. However, the identity of Siri San̆gabo Śrī Parākrama Bāhu – the king who issued the sannasa – is less certain. Kings Parākrama Bāhu VII, VIII and IX are all possibilities, although it is most likely to have been one of the first two. On palaeographic grounds, Codrington favours Parākrama Bāhu VIII. Oruvaḷa (Oruwala), the village mentioned in the grant, is situated near Aturugiriya, about three miles south-south-west of Nawagamuwa.