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Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic

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Although the Sacred Tooth Relic has been in Sri Lanka since the 4th century, it didn’t find its way to Kandy until the 17th. Housed today in golden-roofed temples clustered on the banks of Kandy’s lake, the relic is kept in lavish state, on a throne, in a jewelled casket sat on a solid gold lotus. The relic itself is said to be the left upper canine tooth of Lord Buddha, and is of such sacred significance that it is believed that whoever holds the relic, holds governance of the country. Whilst the temple’s interiors are richly decorated with carvings and inlays of wood and ivory, one of the most fascinating things about the temple is watching the pilgrims, dressed in white, arriving with their offerings to pay their respects to Buddha.

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