The Battle to Save the Mogao Caves from the Desert
    2013-02-01 10:19:44         Web Editor: Luo Chun

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A site of pilgrimage for over 1000 years, the Mogao Grottoes lie on the old silk road at what was once a confluence of religion, culture and trade between east and west.

The first grotto dates from the 4th century AD when the buddhist monk Le Zun created a cave after having a vision of 1000 buddhas bathed in golden light. Over the next 1000 years 492 caves were carved out by buddhist monks, who painted the walls with intricate murals. 

Today, this site of huge historical significance finds itself in the shadow of the Kumtang, a desert which is expanding by one to four meters every year.

For the past 50 years, a Chinese team of experts have been fighting to save the grottoes from being swallowed up by the sands.

 Looking out over Kumtang desert [Photo:]


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