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Kotokuin Temple - Great Buddha

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Kotokuin Temple - Great Buddha

Kotokuin Temple can be reached by an eight-minute bus ride from Kamakura Station. It is a Buddhist temple, which is part of the Jodoshu sect. The temple is known for the second largest bronze statue of Amitabha Buddha. Minamoto no Yoritomo, the first Shogun of the Kamakura Shogunate, was jealous of the Daibutsu (Great Buddha) in Nara and wanted to build one, but grander in Kamakura. However, Yoritomo died before his dream could be constructed. A wooden Buddha was constructed when Lady Inada, Yoritomo’s court lady, raised enough funds to build one in 1248. The Daibutsu and hall housing the statue was eventually destroyed by a storm and a bronze version replaced it. Afterwards another hall was built to house the bronze statue, but was again destroyed by a storm. The Daibutsu has remained open to the elements since 1495 after being damaged by a tidal wave. Today it stands at 11.4 meters high and weighs over 121 tons.