What is the main difference between Sinhalese and Tamils? The former is an ethnic group that resides in Sri Lanka and they practice Buddhism. The latter is an ethnic group in India and other countries that practice Hinduism.
South Asia is a multicultural subcontinent with several races and religions. Many people find it challenging to differentiate them due to their different races and backgrounds. Sinhalese and Tamils are the most confusing races in South Asia.
We undertook a comprehensive research on the difference between Tamils and Sinhalese based on religion, language, and origin. We recommend reading the entire article and watching the video to have a full understanding of these confusing communities.
Difference Between Sinhalese and Tamils With Comparison Table
|Meaning||These are Sinhalese ethnic community based in Sri Lanka.||These are Tamil ethnic community based in India and other countries.|
|Religion||They practice Theravada Buddhism.||Hinduism in the primary religion.|
|Language||Sinhala is main language spoken.||They speak Tamil language.|
|Origin||North Indian Bengal region||Original inhabitants of India since they belong to Dravidian race.|
|Population||About 17 million people||About 76 million people in different countries.|
|Traditional Dress||Sarong and Kandyan.||Women wear saris and men shirt and dhoti|
|Geographical Distribution||Central, Western and Southern parts of Sri Lanka||State of Tamil Nadu in India, northern and eastern region of Sri Lanka and as Diasporas all around the world.|
What Is Sinhalese?
Sinhalese is a term that refers to the ethnic group of people based in Sri Lanka. They are the majority community in Sri Lanka since they comprise of around 80% of the population.
The ethnic group resides in the Southern, Eastern, and Western part of Sri Lanka. Majority practice Theravada Buddhism and minority Christianity.
Sri Lanka has 17 million Sinhalese population and they speak Sinhala language which is one of the official language of Sri Lanka. Tamil is also among the most spoken language, though the Tamils have faced discrimination from Sinhalese since independence.
Sinhala language also means Lion People. The Sinhalese people originated from the West Bengal and South Indian states from the Hela tribes.
What Is Tamil?
It is a language that is spoken by Tamil community. This ethnic group is mainly found in the Southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu.
Other countries where you can find Tamils are Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, and Canada. The Sri Lanka Tamils dwell in the Northern parts of the country.
Most Tamils practice Hinduism. Others have opted for practice Christianity and Islam due to the freedom of Worship across the world.
There are about 76 million Tamils in the world making Tamil language widely spoken in Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Singapore. But Tamils do experience discrimination in Sri Lanka.
Main Difference Between Sinhalese and Tamils
- Sinhalese is an ethnic group in Sri Lanka while Tamil community are in India and other neighboring countries.
- Sinhalese community practice Theravada Buddhism in Sri Lanka while Tamils practice Hinduism along with Christianity and Islam.
- Sinhalese speak Sinhala language while Tamils speak Tamil language.
- Sri Lanka and other countries have about 17 million Sinhalese people. There are about 76 million Tamils in India and other countries.
- Sinhalese originated from the West Bengal in India while Tamils are the original inhabitants of India since they belong to the Dravidian race.
Comparison Video (Sinhalese Vs Tamils)
Final Thoughts from Experts
The main similarities between Sinhalese and Tamils is that both languages developed in India subcontinent. But the discrimination by Sinhalese against Tamils in Sri Lanka is the reason why many people wanted to know their differences.
The main difference between Sinhalese and Tamils is the language and religion. Most Sinhalese speak Sinhala and practice Buddhism while Tamils speak Tamil language and practice Hinduism along Islam and Christianity. (Source: New York Times)
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