Opinion

Death by Literature and aftermath

Summary

The English fictionalist D’Oyly’s lies have become more than populist lore. The new D’Oylys of the world now manufacture house fictions and BBC facumentaries.

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Some now wish to play India against China: But up until the 1750s, Asia’s massive wealth in the world was generated between India and China through what became known as “the country trade.”

The Plassey coup d’etat in Bengal in 1757 was crucial to England capturing the massive production flowing out of the rich Ganges Delta. The coup d’etat was engineered by one Robert Clive, an EIC “writer, of martial disposition.”

Portuguese conquistadors unable to fully conquer Lanka sieged the montane Kingdom of Sinhale. The Dutch reduced Lanka’s country trade throughout South and South East Asia. England’s occupation of maritime Lanka in 1795 cut off all links between China, western India, West Asia, Africa and beyond. The 1815 coup d’etat in the Kandyan Kingdom claimed the whole country for London banks. This was accomplished by one John D’Oyly, former Writer in the EIC – perhaps the greatest English fictionalist Lanka has yet inspired, and remains head of all English Departments in the country.

D’Oyly started off in 1801, when England’s foreign minister was retitled Secretary of State for War & the Colonies. Secretary Henry Dundas appointed 20 civilians to the Ceylon Civil Service: D’Oyly was among 16 Junior Clerks, educated by the EIC for writerships (junior rank).

D’Oyly became the most famous ‘writer’ of ‘fiction’ in our history as the topmost English spymaster and ‘translator’ – fabricating falsehoods about the exotic tortures of the last king of Kandy. He paid off kavi kola poets to sing his fictions, deploying spies disguised in saffron robes, even posing as a Buddhist priest himself, let alone diverting the amours of poet Gajaman Nona.

The English fictionalist D’Oyly’s lies have become more than populist lore. The new D’Oylys of the world now manufacture house fictions and BBC facumentaries. As to those who wish to emulate such D’Oylys, let us remind them of his successor’s fate. The English Civil Service’s William Tolfrey had supervised the Colombo Auxiliary Bible Society translation of the Bible into better Sinhala, because the earlier translations used derogatory: ‘Umbala, varella, palayalla, karapalla, etc.’

As Chief Government Translator, Tolfrey repeatedly warned the English of imminent Kandyan conspiracy, and died insane on February 4th, 1817 in the English asylum (now Independence Square). Governor Brownrigg noted he had died due to his “excessive literary endeavours,” and reported, “perfect tranquility and great confidence prevails.” Six months later Kandy was aflame, as Lanka’s first war of independence was launched!

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