A 600-year-old Buddha statue has emerged from the Hongmen Reservoir when 30 feet (10 m) of water was drained because of the nearby hydropower gate renovation. Archeologists think that this 12.5 feet (3.8 meters) tall statue could date back to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).
It’s extremely well-preserved. The scientists think that the underwater period since 1958, when the reservoir was built, might have helped shelter the statue from other elements.
The statue was submerged in 1960 when the Hongmen reservoir was built, and back then the local authorities simply weren’t aware of heritage protection.
And there still are those, who remember the statue before that. Like Huang Keping, a 82-year-old local blacksmith, who saw the Buddha first time in 1952:
“I remember the statue was gilded at that time”