Sri Lanka has left its mark on the history of South Asia. Located at the crossroads of maritime routes of the Indian Ocean, « the resplendent island » has forged its destiny through its exchanges with the outside world. Cradle of flourishing civilizations since the arrival of man on the island, Sri Lanka is inseparable from the history of neighboring India. Nicknamed « Buddha’s Tear », the archipelago was one of the main lands of welcome and development of Buddhism in South Asia. Coveted for its ideal position in the heart of the Indian Ocean, as well as for its precious materials, the former British Ceylon had been the prey of the great Indian and European empires. Through the cultural upheavals that shook the Indian subcontinent, Sri Lanka has always known how to shape its history by going beyond the legend of its founding myths.