Sri Lanka was previous called Ceylon. Before it became known as Ceylon, the country was called British Ceylon. The country was referred to by numerous names in other countries, such as Sinhala in India and the Greek name of Taprobane.
The country of Ceylon was discovered by the Portuguese in 1505, opening the country up to European interest for many centuries to come. The country was conquered by Britain in 1815 and was called British Ceylon until 1948 when it gained full independence. With the gaining of its freedom, Ceylon made many changes, including changing its name to Sri Lanka in 1972 and making Buddhism its main religion.