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Ruins of St. Paul’s in Macau One of Seven Wonders of Portuguese Origin

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The Ruins of St. Paul's in Macau has been listed as one of the monuments among the "New 7 Wonders of Portuguese Origin".

"On the year that is celebrated the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the Macau Special Administrative Region, the listing of the Ruins of St. Paul's as one of the 'New 7 Wonders of Portuguese Origin' is an honor to us and it certainly will help to promote Macau in Portugal and the Portuguese speaking countries," said Macau Government Tourist Office (MGTO) director, João Manuel Costa Antunes.

"The Ruins of St. Paul's are one of the finest examples of Macau's unique characteristics as a city of European, Chinese and other Asian exchanges. The history and architectural elements of the Ruins of St. Paul's by itself are a tourist attraction of Macau," the MGTO director added.

The winning monuments of the competition were announced on June 10, Portugal National Day, in a ceremony held in Portugal. Among the winners are monuments built by the Portuguese in America, Africa and Asia. A total of 239,418 people participated in the selection, voting through the Internet, telephone and SMS.

The Ruins of St Paul's are Macau's ex-libris. The façade of the former Mater Dei Church is part of The Historic Centre of Macau, listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site in 2005. The Ruins of St. Paul's refer to the façade of what was originally the Church of Mater Dei built in 1602-1640 and the ruins of St. Paul's College, which stood adjacent to the Church, both destroyed by fire in 1835.

 The baroque design of the granite façade is unique in China, and carries some sculptured western and oriental motifs. St. Paul's College was the first western style university in the Far East, and it prepared missionaries for the dissemination of Catholicism in Asia and enabled a broader interchange in other fields.

Other sites of the "New 7 Wonders of Portuguese Origin" include monuments in India, Morocco, Cape Verde and Brazil. The monuments were selected from a total of 27, located in 16 countries.

The "New 7 Wonders of Portuguese Origin" was created following the world competition of the "New 7 Wonders", which were announced in Lisbon in 2007, in an initiative by New7Wonders.

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