To Restore or Not to Restore

I have just returned from Burma where I was able to see many ancient pagodas and stupas. Burma (or Myanmar if you prefer) is also a land of occasional earthquakes. I had the dubious pleasure of experiencing one while I was there. The combination of pagoda building and earthquakes has produced many interesting ruins such as the one that appears in the picture (Indein Temples Complex). Many of the ruins are quite old and strangely attractive in their ruined state. The question arises whether such ruins should be restored? The ruins are romantic but their long-term survival is threatened unless they are restored. But then a modern restoration may be out of character with the ancient buildings. And there is always the chance of another earthquake.

(C) Marta Stoklosa
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One thought on “To Restore or Not to Restore”

  1. The same dilemma arose when deciding what to do with the yacht of the Irish patriot Erskine Childers. For years it was just sitting in the yard of Kilmainham Gaol. Then somebody came up with the great idea of restoring it so that it could go to sea again. Unfortunately this involved replacing almost all of the wood and nails. What would be left of the original boat? Thank goodness it never went ahead.

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