In the ancient Japanese capital of Kamakura - 25 miles south-west of Tokyo - the seven-century-old Great Buddha is currently being reinforced to protect it from damage in case another big earthquake should hit the Kwanto area of the country.
GV Giant Buddha
CU Face of Buddha
LV Men work on foundation
SV Men insert rails under Buddha
SV Man shows how high Buddha has been lifted
CU Worker with hammer
CU Hitting wedge under foundation
CU Man jacks up platform
CTV Pan from on lookers to men working on new platform
SV & CU Woman in prayer
LV PAN from men working to Buddha
Full CU Buddha's face
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Background: In the ancient Japanese capital of Kamakura - 25 miles south-west of Tokyo - the seven-century-old Great Buddha is currently being reinforced to protect it from damage in case another big earthquake should hit the Kwanto area of the country.
Technicians working on the project have discovered that Buddha has "put on weight". The bronze statue weighs 163 tons and not 130 tons as previously estimated.
The Buddha was raised 19 inches during the construction of the special foundation. A ferro-concrete base reinforced with stainless steel is being built under the image at a cost of GBP8,400. The project is scheduled to be completed during May.
Kamakura is ow a prosperous seaside city in Kanagawa prefecture. For several centuries it was the sent of the Shoguns, the warrior dictators of Japan. It is a city of many Buddhist and Shinto temples. The statue represents the Amida Buddha ("Lord of Boundless Light") sitting in meditation, and was cost in 1252 by Ono Goroemon, a famous sculptor.
At one time it was enclosed in a hall, but this was carried away by a tidal wave in 1494 and has not been replaced. The present "quake-proofing" coincides with a series of earthquakes in the Kwanto area and predictions among Japanese fortune-tellers that another tremor is due.