Day

July 30, 2021

Processional staff 1

This would have been one of a set of probably eight staffs, which would have been displayed at the 1883 Howell Rd temple in Tingha. This staff, along with Processional staff 2, are the only ones from this set still known to exist. LOCATION Wing Hing Long Museum, Tingha Processional staff 1 – at Wing Hing Long Museum (IMG_6247, 13.4.21) IMG_4160 IMG_4161 TRANSCRIPTION AND TRANSLATION 光緒九年仲春吉旦   沐 恩弟子梁苟仝敬送 Respectfully and conjointly given by Thy/Your favoured follower Leung Kau on an auspicious day in the second Spring month of the ninth year of the Kuang Hsü Era. WHERE WAS THIS OBJECT USED? This object, and the matching entitled “Processional staff 2”, are inscribed with a date that corresponds to 1883. Accordingly, the hypothesis is that they come from Tingha’s lavish 1883 temple. NOTES 仝 “conjointly”: This object forms a pair with “Processional staff 2”, which was donated by a certain 梁國 “Leung Kwok”. The word 仝 “conjointly” in the inscription presumably references the fact that the...
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Donation plaque dated 1866

A Chinese-temple donation inscription that is couched as an address to that temple’s deity or deities, as is customary with such inscriptions.
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Shrine cabinet panel 11

One of several pieces that would have been part of shrine cabinets. It is not yet known which cabinet, nor which temple, these pieces are from. LOCATION McCrossin’s Mill Museum, Uralla Shrine cabinet panel 11 – at McCrossin’s Mill (IMG_6045, 12.4.21) This is a continually evolving website, and more information about this object will be published as further research is conducted. Objects gallery view Objects list view
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Incense crate

Shipping crate for “superior benzoin incense” from the Macao firm of 陳天祥 “Chan Tin Cheung”. This firm was one of eighteen members of an incense manufacturers’ guild that formed in 1898–9. LOCATION Wing Hing Long Museum, Tingha Incense crate – at Wing Hing Long Museum (IMG_4136, 14.7.19) TRANSCRIPTION AND TRANSLATION 粵東澳門 陳天祥上息香 Chan Tin Cheung’s superior benzoin incense. Macao, Eastern Yuet. NOTES 粵東 “Eastern Yuet”: 粵 “Yuet” was the name of a vast area of southern China that was home to the ancient Yuet peoples, and does not correspond to the provincial or other administrative boundaries of any Chinese state. Such expressions as “粵東/東粵” “Eastern Yuet”, “粵西/西粵” “Western Yuet”, and “兩粵” “The Two Yuet” were, however, often used as literary and history-referencing substitutes for the province names “Kwang Tung”, “Kwang Hsi” and the “The Two Kwang” (both Kwang Tung and Kwang Hsi) respectively, in much the same way as the words “Hibernia” and “Caledonia” are used in English as literary and...
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Yee Hing Society name plaque

This name plaque, which would perhaps have originally been displayed above a front doorway, may come from Tingha’s Yee Hing Society building in Amethyst Street. LOCATION Inverell Pioneer Village Collage of four photographs of the Yee Hing Society name plaque TRANSCRIPTION AND TRANSLATION 義興公司 Yee Hing Society WHERE WAS THIS OBJECT USED? This name plaque, which would perhaps have originally been displayed above a front doorway, may come from Tingha’s Yee Hing Society building on the high side of Amethyst Street, which seems to have been variously referred to as the “New Masonic Temple”, “the Chinese Freemasons building” and “the Old Joss House”. NOTES: See also: For other artefacts that relate to the Yee Hing Society, and commentary thereon, see the Tingha Yee Hing Society stamp, the Sydney Yee Hing Society plaque, and the Moree Yee Hing Society plaque. This is a continually evolving website, and more information about this object will be published as further research is conducted. Inscriptions...
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Temple drum stand

The drum on this stand would have been struck to call the attention the deity or deities of a temple. The donor names inscribed on the stand link it to the 1883 Howell Rd temple in Tingha. LOCATION McCrossin’s Mill Museum, Uralla Temple drum stand – at McCrossin’s Mill (IMG_4579, 15.7.19) Inscription on temple drum stand – at McCrossin’s Mill (IMG_6112, 12.4.21) TRANSCRIPTION 沐 恩弟子香邑烏石 鄭泰坤 鄭賀麟 敬送 TRANSLATION Respectfully given by Thy/Your favoured followers Cheng Tai Kwan and Cheng Ho Lun of Woo Shek, Heung Shan. WHERE WAS THIS OBJECT USED? “Cheng Tai Kwan” is also named as a donor of Processional placard 1. That placard is linked to Tingha’s 1883 Howell Road temple. Accordingly, it seems likely that this object also comes from Tingha’s lavish 1883 Howell Road temple. This hypothesis fits with the preponderance of donors of the same surname—鄭 “Cheng”—who are named on the processional placards (9 of the 20 placard donors are surnamed 鄭 “Cheng”). Another fact that seemingly supports this...
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Mannequin stand

The base stand from a diorama that would have showed mannequins from a scene in a play, and which would have been part of the display within a temple. LOCATION McCrossin’s Mill Museum, Uralla Mannequin stand – at McCrossin’s Mill (IMG_4378, 15.7.19) TRANSCRIPTIONS AND TRANSLATIONS 1. Small label at far right 狄青比武⋯⋯ Ti Ch῾ing Competes in Armed Combat … 2. Small label second from right 狄青比武後〢 Rear of Ti Ch῾ing Competes in Armed Combat—2 3. Small label third from right 狄青比武後〣 Rear of Ti Ch῾ing Competes in Armed Combat—3 4. Small label at centre ⋯⋯〤 … 4 5. Small label third from left ⋯⋯比武⋯⋯ … Competes in Armed Combat … 6. Small label second from left 狄青⋯⋯武後⋯⋯ Rear of Ti Ch῾ing … Armed Combat … 7. Small label at far left ⋯⋯〧 … 7 8. Large label at centre 狄青比武後 Rear of Ti Ch῾ing Competes in Armed Combat 9. Brush-written characters at centre 天字 0001 NOTES Underlined text in the transcriptions and translations: The underlining in the transcriptions and translations serves to highlight text that could be determined with...
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Interior photograph of the last Rocky River temple

Dated 1908, the temple pictured is presumably the 1880 Rocky River temple, which reportedly burnt down in 1912. LOCATION Private collection Main altar in what is believed to be a 1908 photograph of the Rocky River temple: from private collection, reproduced in Golden Threads, p. 87. NOTES Textual content: This photograph contains a number of texts: a pillar inscription, a censer inscription, and at least two altar inscriptions. None of these, however, is legible in the low-resolution photograph above. The most important of the texts is presumably the censer inscription, which probably provides the name of the temple: a high-resolution scan of the original image might facilitate its determination. Identity of the temple: Given the date of the photograph, the temple pictured is presumably the last of the Rocky River temples, which opened in 1880, and reportedly burnt down in 1912. For a newspaper report on its opening, see: http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article82894786 This is a continually evolving website, and more information about this photograph...
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Carved scene with three sheep

The shape of this frieze suggests it graced the top of the front of an altar table. It was made by the firm of 三友 “Sam Yau” in Canton. LOCATION McCrossin’s Mill Museum, Uralla Carved scene with three sheep – at McCrossin’s Mill (IMG_6204, 12.4.21) TRANSCRIPTIONS AND TRANSLATIONS Manufacturer’s name at top right 省城杉木欄三友造 Made by Sam Yau of the Provincial Capital’s Cham-muk-lan. Above-door inscription within the scene 太史第 Residence of the Grand Record Keeper. NOTES 省城 “the Provincial Capital”: The expression 省城 “the Provincial Capital” would refer in this context to the city of Canton (now also known as Guangzhou). 杉木欄 Cham-muk-lan: “Cham-muk-lan” is a historical romanisation of the name of a woodworking and timber-supply quarter of Canton. This quarter’s Chinese name (杉木欄) translates literally as “Fir-wood Market”, fir having been the mainstay of traditional Chinese building and woodwork. Cham-muk-lan was located to the southwest of the city, outside the city walls, along a section of road called, for obvious reasons, 杉木欄街 “Cham-muk-lan Street” (now 杉木欄路“Cham-muk-lan Road”). 三友 “Sam Yau”:...
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“Southern sky” couplet board

This couplet board is believed to have formed part of a shrine-cabinet surround, as is suggested by the tenons projecting at top. LOCATION McCrossin’s Mill Museum, Uralla “Southern sky” couplet board – at McCrossin’s Mill (IMG_4567, 15.7.19) TRANSCRIPTION AND TRANSLATION 神靈顯赫耀南天       Gods so illustrious that they outshine the southern sky. WHERE WAS THIS OBJECT USED? The hypothesis is that this couplet board, which the metrical structure of its text indicates occupied a position on the left, formed part of a shrine cabinet surround (as is suggested by the tenons projecting at top). However, the identity of the temple it comes from is not known. NOTES “Southern sky”: The nature of the text and the tenons projecting from the top of the board suggest that it once formed part of an altar surround within a temple. It seems likely that the expression translated as “southern sky” is an oblique reference to this temple’s geographical location in Australia, and thus constitutes...
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