The Sri Lankan people are the Sinhalese and are also known as “Hela” or “Sinhala”. These synonyms find their origins in the two words Sinha (meaning “lion”) and Hela (meaning “pristine”).
The name Sinhala translates to “lion people” and refers to the myths regarding the descent of the legendary founder of the Sinhalese people, the Prince Vijaya.
The royal dynasty from ancient times on the island was the Sinha (Lion) royal dynasty and the word Sinha finds its origins here.Sri Lanka has got its old name “Sinhale” or “Heladiva” after Sinhalese who built up the civilisation of the island.
The former names of the country “Serendib”, “Seylan” and “Ceylon” have derived from the old name “Sinhale”