A bell that was looted from the Shwedagon Pagoda 400 years ago is said to be found in the Yangon river, according to a group of local divers.
Bangkok Post, via AFP, 27 August 2014
A team of Myanmar divers claims to have discovered a legendary bell in the murky depths of the Rangoon river — with the help of dragon spirits — in the latest twist to a 400-year-old drama that has gripped the nation.
Dozens of divers, equipped only with goggles and plastic oxygen hoses, have plunged into the fast-flowing waters in search of the long-lost Dhammazedi bell, in a spectacle that has generated scepticism but also attracted lines of spectators along the riverbank since the search began earlier this month.
The group is the latest in a series of treasure hunters eager to try to raise the near-mythical giant bell, which is said to have sunk without trace after being stolen from Rangoon’s revered Shwedagon Pagoda by a Portuguese mercenary in the 1600s.
It was reputedly loaded onto a boat which sank under the weight.