An enormous statue of the ancient Chinese warrior Guan Yu was recently unveiled at a park in Jingzhou city in Hubei province. The statue depicts the 3rd century BC general carrying an intimidating axe-like weapon called the "Green Dragon Crescent Blade". It stands 48 meters tall, atop a 10-meter-high pedestal and is reported to weigh over 1,320 tons.
General Guan Yu lived during a restless period in Chinese history known as the Three Kingdoms, and was later immortalized in one of China's most famous historical novel. He was eventually turned into a god and is worshipped as thus, especially in southern China. Guan's true life stories have now largely be given way to fictionalized ones. Praised and respected for his loyalty and righteousness, small shrines and statues to Guan are almost ubiquitous in traditional Chinese shops and restaurants. Aside from the latest statue in Jingzhou, there is another large statue of him in Guan's hometown in the Shanxi province. That one measures 61 meters tall, including a 19-meters-tall pedestal.
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