任睇No.1
  • 19º
  • 83%
  • 2023年2月2日 星期四

Michael Chugani 褚簡寧 - A treasure trove|又中又英

When I worked in London years ago, I spent the weekends visiting places such as Trafalgar Square, Piccadilly Circus, and Hyde Park. One of the most interesting places I visited was the British Museum. Built in 1753, this museum contains a treasure trove of over eight million historical items that cover two million years of human history. The sculptures, statues, Egyptian mummies, and other things tell the story of human culture from the beginning to the present. A treasure trove is large collection of valuable things. A mummy means mother, but an Egyptian mummy is a dead body that is prevented from decaying with chemicals and wrapped in cloth.

Some of the most popular items in the British Museum are the Parthenon Sculptures, also known as the Elgin Marbles, a collection of classical Greek marble sculptures dating back to the 5th century BC. The letters “BC” mean Before Christ, or the years before the birth of Jesus Christ. AD means the years after the death of Christ. Most items in the British Museum are looted (stolen) from colonized countries in the British Empire. Greece has for decades demanded the return of the sculptures. A Greek newspaper last week revealed the chairman of the British Museum had secretly discussed with the Greek prime minister to return the sculptures.

Lord Elgin, a British soldier and diplomat, took the Parthenon Sculptures from Athens in the early 19th century. That’s why the sculptures are also called the Elgin Marbles. The British government bought the sculptures in 1816 and put them in the British Museum. The Parthenon Sculptures are part of Greece’s ancient history. Britain should return this looted treasure.
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我多年前在倫敦工作時,會用各個周末去遊覽不同的地方,例如特拉法加廣場、皮卡迪利圓環及海德公園等。其中一個我到訪過最有趣的地方是大英博物館。這間博物館於一七五三年建成,包含超過八百萬件歷史文物的寶庫(treasure trove),橫跨二百萬年人類歷史。那些雕塑、雕像、埃及木乃伊(Egyptian mummy),還有許多其他物件盡在訴說人類文化自盤古初開至今天的故事。A treasure trove就是彙集大量珍貴物品的寶庫。A mummy是媽咪,但Egyptian mummy則是指埃及木乃伊,就是用化學物料防止腐化、以布包裹的屍體。

大英博物館內其中一樣最吸引民眾的文物是巴特農石雕,又稱為額爾金石雕,它是一組古希臘時期的大理石石雕,年份可追溯至公元前(BC)五世紀。BC是指「主前」Before Christ,耶穌出生前的年份;AD則是「主後」、公元後,耶穌基督死後的年份。大英博物館大部份的文物都是大英帝國時期從其殖民的國家掠奪(looted)回來的。數十年來,希臘一直要求英國歸還石雕。上星期有一份希臘報章披露,大英博物館主席已秘密跟希臘總理商討歸還石雕事宜。

於十九世紀初,一位英國軍人與外交官額爾金伯爵,從雅典取走了巴特農石雕,因此那些雕塑也被稱為額爾金大理石雕。英國政府於一八一六年購買了這些石雕,並置藏於大英博物館內。巴特農石雕是希臘古史的一部份,英國好應歸還這件掠奪(looted)得來的寶物。
mickchug@gmail.com
中譯:七刻
Michael Chugani 褚簡寧


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