Friday, 28 March 2008

St. Francisco Barracks 嘉思欄炮台 (嘉思栏炮台)

St. Francisco Barracks in Macau is among the prime Macau tourist attractions, and it is unique among the forts in Macau. The fort was built in 1629 at the very place where the Cannons were positioned to commemorate the victory of the Portuguese over the Dutch Navy. The colonial masters house their military capacity at St. Francisco Barracks to take the place as a good omen for the safety of Macau. The original fortress of S. Francisco and the convent of S. Francisco are located adjacent to the barracks.

The St. Francisco Barracks in Macau faces the Taipa channel at the end of aged Praia Grande. The armaments exhibited grand cannon with capacity to fire 35-pound iron shots to a distance of one and a half miles. The Barracks was conceived to house the Battalion of the First Line organized to defend Macau against a possible Chinese attack that never came.

嘉思欄炮台位於澳門大堂區。 在葡萄牙殖民地時期曾是軍事防御據點之一。 昔日的嘉思欄炮台曾為沿海第一道防線, 與媽閣炮台、仁伯爵炮台、聖約翰城堡及三巴炮台互相連貫, 防守澳門東南方向的沿海地區。 炮台名字是紀念一艘名叫嘉思欄(Gallias)的葡萄牙戰船, 戰船在1622年(明朝天啟二年)抵抗荷蘭人入侵澳門時被擊沉。

早年葡國人在該處建工事、筑炮台。 1629年炮台建成今天之規模。 炮台上的石牆高二丈、寬二十多丈, 放有大炮十台。 石牆以巨大的麻石砌成, 堅固挺拔, 數百年來多次維修保存至今。 炮台后的樓房是兵營。 1584年西班牙傳教士在嘉思欄炮台后址建立聖方濟各修道院。 其后羅馬教會實行改革修院廢置多年。 后來修院改為兵營, 七十年代葡兵撤出后該處改為保安部。 毗連則改建成為了今日的嘉思欄花園。 園中圓柱形建筑物前身為歐戰紀念館以紀念葡萄牙在第一次世界大戰中陣亡的士兵, 現已成為澳門傷殘人士協會的會址。

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