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The travels of the sacred Tooth Relic

One of Buddha's Teeth is housed in a temple located in Kandy. The story behind the tooth relic begins over 2000 years ago. During a period of 800 years King Guhasiva was at war with King Ksheeradhara’s sons. When their armies entered the city in order to prevent the it’s possession being transferred to his enemies, the Kalinga king Guhasiva smuggled the tooth relic to Sri Lanka with Prince Dantha and Princess Hemamala during the 4th century AD. This was only possible because the royal couple were in disguise and the princess hid the tooth relic in her hair ornament.

Hence they landed in Sri Lanka and handed it over to the local King for safe keeping. The tooth relic yet again had to be protected from foreign invaders but was successfully guarded in the country while moving from the Anuradhapura kingdom to the kingdom of Polonnaruwa and so on.

At a certain point during the Portuguese invasion they stole the tooth relic and burnt it but legend has it that it was only a replica and the real tooth was hidden away with the people. The tooth grew as a symbol, many buddhists visit at least once in their lifetime and many traditions are built surrounding the tooth. It is said to be sitting in the “Dalada Maligawa”, the temple of the tooth but rumours encompass the tooth that even this that is inside the temple is merely a replica and the original is somewhere secret, somewhere safe.

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