Thursday, December 16, 2010

Oura Cathedral & Glover Garden 大浦天主堂

Oura Cathedral, located in Nagasaki at Kyushu prefecture, is the oldest church in Japan completed in December 1864. It was designated as a National Treasure on 23 Jan 1933. This church is also named as "Church of the 26 Japanese Martyrs".


How Christianity spread in Japan was largely credited to a Spanish missionary, Francis Xavier, who arrived on Kagoshima island in 1549. However it was later banned in 1587 due to feudal lord, Toyotomi Hideyoshi's fear that Christianity was a barrier to his plan of uniting the whole of Japan. Centuries after his death, the country was re-opened and Christians, who went into hiding, came out. Nagasaki, which was the heart of Christianity activity, still remains as a prefecture with majority of its population as Christians.

-中文省略 XD -

Nearby is Glover garden, a beautiful reside of famous Scottish merchant, Thomas Blake Glover. He had helped Japan to build up her industrialization during the Meiji period and set up companies like Mitsubishi and Kirin that we know today.
離教堂附近是Glover園。這地方原本是著名蘇格蘭商人,Thomas Blake Glover的別墅。他曾經在明治時代時幫助日本走向工業發展,並開設現在大家都知道的三葉集團和Kirin釀酒廠。

From the close proximity between the cathedral and residence, I can sense the close relationship between Christianity and trade. Both were introduced and conducted at the same time.

There were even escalators on the hill to bring us up!?

We can see the nearby port, again a reminder of the link between Nagasaki and it's active role in trading.

Well I wish this was my mansion...

If I can eat this everyday... ... (I will never be able to slim down).
假如天天都能這樣吃... ..(我會永遠瘦不下來)

The exit was down a building, which was the Nagasaki Traditional Arts Museum.

We didn't have much time, so I think these were carts that peasants carry around during festivals.

We had lunch at a nearby restaurant and the spread of dishes is called Shippoku. Basically they were Nagasaki dishes which were inherited from China due to the influence of early trading between these two countries. However, I find that our Singaporean hawker food is way much better than these.



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