八卦角落与闹鬼传闻

1863 CO 1069-556-3- rs

  在那个邮票都还没普及的年代,远离家乡的人们是多么渴望来自故乡的音讯,到这个聊天角落来,听听故事解解乡愁,成了平日的社交活动。

  新加坡曾有个地方,因为人们喜欢在那里聊天讲闲话说八卦,被称为”八卦角落”或”丑闻角”(Gossip Corner,Scandal Point)。

  在开埠初年,那是一个还没有电灯和汽车的年代,当时住在这商埠的欧籍人士用餐的时间比较早,每天晚餐过后大约在下午四点半,就会到大草场散步或遛马。

  在圣安德烈教堂对面靠海的草场边有一处叫桑迪角(Sandy Point)的地方, 是海岸线上一块突出的小尖角,那里曾有一座小炮台。其对岸就是后来叫红灯码头的地方。

矮石墙上’广播’八卦丑闻

  1830年浮尔顿炮台竣工后,这尖角上的小炮台就改为礼炮炮台。草场靠新加坡河口的一端则曾有一座码头,那是早年官式访问的登岸口,那门礼炮就为当年军事仪式提供服务。

  大约在19世纪的50年代,礼炮被移走,炮台遗址的空地以及留下的矮石墙正适合人们歇脚聊天。在那个邮票都还没普及的年代,远离家乡的人们是多么渴望来自故乡的音讯,到这个聊天角落来,听听故事解解乡愁,成了平日的社交活动。

  每天上午镇上发生的事,船客水手带来的消息,到了下午全到这里”广播”。当然流言蜚语,八卦丑闻,也是从这里传开来,”八卦角落”与”丑闻角”因此而得名。

传建教堂需人头祭

  19世纪50年代,圣安德烈教堂的建筑结构出问题,为安全起见,教徒不在里面做礼拜,不久城里就有教堂闹鬼的传言。当时重建工程用的是印度裔工人,城里更是人心惶惶,传说建教堂需要人头祭!

Charles Dyce - The Esplanade 1840s rs

  据报道,在教堂对面的这个八卦角落,人们相互告诫坊间流传的谣言。中国古代建桥造路本有人头祭的传言,南洋这里也不时因洋人政府要造桥建教堂,而传出秘密砍人头祭祀的谣言。

  后来,因为海岸的填土工程,空地上开始有流动小贩招徕生意,但人们因为城市的发展,聚会聊天的场地也多了,八卦角落从此走进历史。

  想起我们小时候,每当孩子顽皮不听话的时候,老一辈就会警告说:”不听话就叫’安菍菍’(印度人)来捉你”。不知道这种加了种族色彩管教孩子的方式,是否就跟百年前的那段教堂闹鬼谣言有关?

(吴庆辉,联合晚报 3-9-2014)

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