Sinhala Bible With Subject Index / New Translation Second Edition / RNV 63 C / 2000 India Print by order of The Ceylon Bible Society
JOHN 3:16 in Sinhalese
16 MILLION NATIVE SPEAKERS!
Sinhalese (//), known natively as Sinhala (Sinhalese: සිංහල; singhala [ˈsiŋɦələ]),is the native language of the Sinhalese people, who make up the largest ethnic group in Sri Lanka, numbering about 16 million.Sinhalese is also spoken as a second language by other ethnic groups in Sri Lanka, totalling about four million.It belongs to the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European languages.Sinhalese has its own writing system, the Sinhalese alphabet, which is one of the Brahmic scripts, a descendant of the ancient Indian Brahmi script closely related to the Kadamba alphabet.
The oldest Sinhalese Prakrit inscriptions found are from the third to second century BCE following the arrival of Buddhism in Sri Lanka,the oldest existing literary works date from the ninth century. The closest relative of Sinhalese is the language of the Maldives and Minicoy Island (India), the Maldivian language.
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