From the Camoes Garden, Jandy, Cheska and I proceeded to the Old Protestant Cemetery where 150 British and American graves recall the days of the foreign trading and naval presence in Macau.  The cemetery was established by the British East India Company in 1821 in response to a lack of burial sites for Protestants in Macau.  Looking around, I found it interesting reading some of the head stones and seeing just how young some people were when they died.

Protestant Cemetery

Its small Morrison Chapel, situated on the edge of the Camoes Gardens and adjoining the stately mansion of the Fundacao Oriente, was built in 1821. It was named after linguist and missionary Robert Morrison (January 5, 1782-August 1, 1834), author of the first Chinese-English Dictionary and the first translation of the Bible into Chinese.  The chapel serves as a focus for Macau’s English speaking Protestant community. Its stained glass window shows an open Bible with Chinese characters for “In the beginning was the Word.”

Morrison Chapel

Aside from Mr Morrison and fellow British missionary Samuel Dyer (February 20, 1804–October 24, 1843), the cemetery has a few famous residents buried there, including that of noted English painter George Chinnery (January 5, 1774-May 30, 1852) who died at his home on Rua De Ignacio Baptista.  His memorial can be found on the northern wall of the cemetery. The Macau Museum has some of his works from India and the Far East.

Morrison Chapel – Interior

Others buried here include Royal Navy Capt. Henry John Spencer-Churchill (son of the 5th Duke of Marlborough and great-great-grand-uncle of Winston Churchill) and US Naval Lt. Joseph Harod Adams (grandson of John Adams, the second president of the United States, and nephew of the sixth, John Quincy Adams). The cemetery was closed in 1858.

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