Kumaratunga Munidasa, a pioneer for Sinhala Literature, was born on 25, July 1887 at Hidagasara, Dickwella. His father was one of popular Ayurvedic Doctor, called Don Abiyes Kumaratunga and his mother was Palavinnage Dona Gimara Muthukumarana. He had 12 brothers and sisters.
School Days of Kumaratunga Munidasa
He started his primary education from Dickwella Buddhist School and when he was in Grade 06, he entered into High school at Balapitiya. After that, he was able to enter to St. Thomas College – Matara when he was in Grade 07, but unfortunately, Kumaratunga Munidasa e had to give up his studies. But he tried to remove all his obstacles and learnt himself. For that, his father’s books were very useful at that time. It was clearly mentioned at his book called “Piyasamara”.
During that time, he improved his language knowledge (Pali and Sanskrit) at Wewurukannala Pirivena. For that, Rev. Ananda monk who was at Wewurukannala Pirivena, helped him. Then in 1904 he entered into the Government Teachers’ College in Colombo and he got his first appointment as a government teacher in Bilingual School of Bomiriya. After showing his colours at that school, he was appointed to Kadugannawa Bilingual School as the Principal in 1909. While he continued his career in teaching and passed several professional exams, he was able to be an inspector of schools in 1917. But he resigned from that position in 1922. After that, he was able to be the head of Teaching School at Nittabuwa and the head of Teaching Training School – Balapitiya. After resigning from these positions, he made a organization call “Sinhala Samajaya” and then Kumaratunga Munidasa changed its name as “Sinhalalaya”. Thereafter, he established “Hela Havula”. Hela Havula was the starting point for many scholars and artists.
Kumaratunga Munidasa is known best for his profound knowledge of the Sinhala language and literary work and he has done a great service to Sinhala Literature. Some of his popular books are; Heenseraya, Hathpana, Kriya Wiwaranaya, Magul Kema, Nelawilla, Prabandha Sangrahaya, Wirith Wakiya and Kiyawana Nuwana.