The Portuguese had captured most of the Western maritime provinces as well as areas near Gokanna, i.e., Trincomalee (named Triquillemele in De Queyroz) and Madakalapuwa, i.e., Batticaloa (Battacilow in William Broedelet's 1692 map).The Portuguese Captain Major Philippe de Oliveira had captured the Northern peninsula (Jaffnapatuna) and its ruler Sankilli-II ( Cankili Kumaran) in 1619 CE.This is further clarified by noting that eighteen countries are mentioned in early Tamil literature, clearly distinguishing "cinkalam" from "Tamlaak(h)am", viz., cimkaḷam, conaakam, cā vakam, cīṉam, tuḷuvam, kutakam, konkanam, kanna-tam, kollam, telin(g)kam, kalin(g)kam, vaṅkam, kaṅ- kam, makatam, kaṭāram, kavuṭam, koklam, tamilakam; சிங்களம், சோனகம், சாவகம், சீனம், துளுவம், குடகம், கொங் ;கணம், கன்னடம், கொல்லம், தெலிங்கம், கலிங்கம், ;வ ங்கம், கங்கம், மகதம், கடாரம், கவுடம், கோசலம், தமிழகம்.The early Pali writings of Sri Lanka also mention similar names for kingdoms located in the subcontinent.However, when ever the King of Lanka was weak, the three "kingdoms" functioned as quasi-independent units fighting each other for hegemony, often allying with Indian regional princes in the Chola, Pandyan or Northern India.The Hill country, or Malaya rata, and large parts of the wet zone effectively remained inaccessible to the ancients until they acquired steel implements circa 10-12 century and even began to make high quality steel.The name "Sinhalé" was used when Kandasamy was crowned "Sri Wikrama Rajasinghe".
`Taprobane' is believed to be derived from `Tambapanni', a name allegedly given to the island by Founder-Prince, Vijaya, because of the golden brown sands of the coast near Mannar (Manthota) where he landed.
The British signed a treaty with the Kandyan Adigars (minsters) handing over Sinhalé to the British in return for their guaranteeing various rights including the primacy of Buddhism.
It soon became evident that the "Kandyan convention" was a sham which was not being respected by the British.
Sinhala Prakrit itself became known as "Elu", or "Hela-basa" හෙලබස.
Similarly, the name Lanka → Ilankai was adapted during the Cankam period into Dravidian languages, giving its Tamil form Ilankai, .
Th concept of "devolution" did not exist as there was no written constitution, as is the case even today in Britain.