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Posted 13.7.19

Bells of Santiago

Bells of Santiago

We recently received news from our friends in Chile that the famous Bells of Santiago are to be part of a major national display at the National Congress building.

This year's Colloquium on the recovery of Chile's cultural heritage will be dedicated to the bells, which were among the few objects to survive the devastating fire at the Jesuit Church of la CompañIa in Santiago on the evening of the 8th December 1863. The fire claimed the lives of over two and a half thousand people, mostly women and children. It's thought that it's the worst fire, in terms of loss of life, in recorded history.

The bells are currently hung in a specially made feature representing an upturned bell. The display tells the story of the origin of the bells, the devastating fire, their journey to Swansea and their eventual return to Chile in 2010.

Señor Juan Veglia, who is involved in the Colloquium, wrote these words to the parishioners of Oystermouth, "We are frying to learn from the long journey of the bells, from Chile to Wales and back a century and half later, and also to learn from the complex process of recovering them as a cultural heritage for our Country, all thanks to your community's generosity."

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