Exhibition “Chapas Sínicas—Stories of Macao in Torre do Tombo” officially opens

Date : 06/07/2018

The first edition of “Encounter in Macao—Arts and Cultural Festival between China and Portuguese-speaking Countries”, organized by the Cultural Affairs Bureau, with the support of the Secretariat for Social Affairs and Culture, features a variety of events and activities. The exhibition “Chapas Sínicas—Stories of Macao in Torre do Tombo”, jointly presented by the Archives of Macao and the National Archives of Torre do Tombo of Portugal, was inaugurated on 6 July, at 5pm, at the Handover Gifts Museum of Macao. The opening ceremony was officiated by the Minister of Culture and Tourism of the People’s Republic of China, Luo Shugang; the Minister of Culture of Portugal, Luís Filipe de Castro Mendes; the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture of the Macao S.A.R. Government, Alexis Tam Chon Weng; the Deputy Director of the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Macao SAR, Xue Xiaofeng; the Consul-General of Portugal in Macao and Hong Kong, Vitor Sereno; the President of the Cultural Affairs Bureau, Mok Ian Ian; the General Director of the General Directorate for Book, Archives and Libraries of Portugal, Dr. Silvestre de Almeida Lacerda; the Director of the Macao Post and Telecommunications Bureau, Lau Wai Meng; the Acting President of the Administrative Committee of the Macao Foundation, Zhong Yi Seabra de Mascarenhas; and the Deputy Director of the Macao Government Tourism Office of the Macao S.A.R. Government, Hoi Io Meng.

The collection of “Chapas Sínicas”, which was known as “Official Records of Macao During the Qing Dynasty (1693-1886)” is composed of official correspondence between the Chinese and Portuguese authorities created mainly from the early reign of Emperor Qianlong to the late reign of Emperor Daoguang in the Qing Dynasty. The “Chapas Sínicas” comprises a total of 3,600 documents, including over 1,500 official letter written in Chinese, 5 books of Portuguese translated copies of the letters kept by the Loyal Senate of Macao and 4 packets of miscellaneous documents, which are a rich manifestation of an important stage of the history of Macao and has been successfully inscribed on the Memory of the World Register on 30 October 2017. 

This exhibition showcases a selection of over 100 records, including 12 original documents, which will be exhibited in Macao for one week. The collection of “Chapas Sínicas” includes official correspondence between the Chinese and Portuguese authorities. The records are reflections on the conditions of the society, people’s lives, urban development, trade and commerce, among others, which, though took place in Macao, are of historical relevance to China, Portugal and even to world history. The exhibition runs in two phases: the first from today until 7 August, and the second from 21 August to 7 December at the Handover Gifts Museum of Macao and the Archives of Macao, respectively.

In addition, there will be a lecture series in association with the exhibition delivered by Prof. Zhang Wenqin, professor of History of Sino-Foreign Relations at Sun Yat-sen University; Prof. Jin Guoping, researcher of the Macao Research Institute of Jinan University; and by Dr. Silvestre de Almeida Lacerda, General Director of the General Directorate for Book, Archives and Libraries of Portugal, focusing on the documental significance of “Chapas Sínicas” as well as on the preservation and digitization of records. The lecture series will be conducted in Mandarin and Portuguese with Cantonese, Mandarin and Portuguese simultaneous interpretation. The lecture will be held in the Auditorium of the Handover Gifts Museum of Macao. Registered participants are advised to arrive punctually.  

A limited number of seats for the lectures are still available. Seats are limited and will be distributed on a first come, first serve basis. Admission to the exhibition and lectures is free. For more information, please visit the Archives of Macao’s website at www.archives.gov.mo or call IC through tel. no. 2859 2919 during office hours.

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