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180 Walking Macao, Reading the Baroque Camões and the Casa Garden Chapter 10 181 10. Camões and the Casa Garden 100. Casa Garden This chapter looks at four sites associated with Portuguese and later colonialisms. Three may be visited together: the Casa Garden, the Protestant cemetery and the Camões Garden; the fourth is on Coloane. The Casa Garden is part of a villa, built perhaps in 1770, and later belonging to a surgeon and insurer, Manuel Pereira, a leading name in Macao (another Pereria, a merchant, has his portrait hung in the Casa da Misericórdia). It was leased out to William Fitzhugh in the 1780s, and so to the British East India Company, and then to James Drummond. Here Lord Macartney stayed in 1794 after his embassy to Beijing. In 1885, it was taken over by the Portuguese government. The visitor goes from a low platform on five wide steps, up another staircase which narrows up towards the front door, which is now — after a renovation which changed a sloping roof for a flat one — on the first-floor level of the building. (The ground floor is for the servants and for storage.) The house, with its pond in front, is neo-classical in style, with two bays on either side of the front door, and two wings on either side of that. Part of its garden, to the right as the visitor approaches, was taken over as the Protestant cemetery, and in 1821, a small Protestant chapel was built there, named for Robert Morrison (1782– 1834), translator for the East India Company who is 182 Walking Macao, Reading the Baroque buried in the cemetery, like Chinnery, who painted him and two Chinese assistants working behind him on his Dictionary, and on his Bible, and prayerbook . Morrison appears in academic robes, holding the charter for the Anglo-Chinese College. 1 He stands as an example of the necessity for doublethinking within colonialism: aware of opiumdealing , he justified his activities for the Company for which he worked, on the assumption that he was enabling the bringing of Christianity to China, as the Protestant answer to Ricci. Chinnery’s interest in ruins means that, unconsciously, he painted what the baroque represents. One Chinnery pencil sketch is of the tombs, where the low graves are for the three children of Thomas and Caroline Colledge who died in infancy. 2 A tall column to the right, surmounted by an urn and framed by trees, memorialises John Crockett (1786–1837), who captained an opium storeship, the Jane. The urn above contrasts with the one below, dedicated to another infant, at the foot of this grave. The photograph, which shows a corner of the cemetery and illustrates colonial melancholy, indicates what Chinnery worked from. The column is an allegory, in that it suggests the man as a column of society. It compares with the heroine’s first sight of the odious priest, Mr Brocklehurst, in Jane Eyre (1847), Charlotte Brontë’s novel written ten years after Crockett’s death: ‘A black pillar! — such, at least, appeared to me at first sight, the straight, narrow, sable-clad shape standing erect on the rug: the grim face at the top was like a carved mask, placed above the shaft by way of capital’. 3 In this photograph, the funerary urn placed above the column becomes a head: rather than being a portrait, this face has been depersonalised into an allegory of death and of ruin. In literature, the device of personification allegory turns a quality (e.g. Love) into a person (Venus). In this allegory the reverse has happened. The person is represented by the dead emblematic object, the tallest thing in the cemetery. He is the opposite of what is meant by ‘personification allegory’. Instead, it is more baroque, since the pillar and the capital imply the breakdown of meaning, or rather, they turn meaning into loss and death. The urn and the one below are like the baroque examples found in São José, and the one in Chinnery’s picture of Dr Colledge in his surgery. They imply in the case of Crockett that the masculinity which dominates in the service of colonialism is melancholic, because it is associated with death. It is also associated with the desire to create memories which enforce the idea of the melancholy of colonial service. The idea is recorded in the epitaph inscribed to the man: 101. Tomb of Captain Crockett 183 10. Camões...


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