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Victoria, Seychelles


They are plain and simple, three pairs of extended white wings in masonry, standing on the roundabout at the 5th of June and Liberation Avenues. Conspicuous as they are, they invariably leave visitors guessing at the significance of such a graceful piece of geometry. This is the Bicentennial monument, referred to in Creole as the Moniman trwa lezel (three–winged monument). It was erected in 1978 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the town of Victoria, which was founded as L’Établissement du Roi in 1778 by the Frenchman Charles Routier de Romainville. The monument was created by the late Italian artist Lorenzo Appiani, who lived in Seychelles. The three wings represent the origins of the Seychellois people, who can best be described as a happy blend of the ethnic groups of three continents: Africa, Europe, and Asia. The wings may also symbolize the first discoverers of the islands. Birds, of course. (Text taken from the book "Discovering The National Monuments of Seychelles", and is used by permission from The National Heritage.)


This natural wonder forms part of L’Union Estate and is classified as a National Monument. Covering an acre of land at Anse L’Union on the west coast of the island of La Digue, it is by any standards an impressive monolith. The granite boulder was formed during the Precambrian, around 750 million years ago, by the slow cooling of molten rocks (magma) deep within the earth’s crust which gave it its especially large crystals. The granite boulder of Anse L’Union is a spectacular piece of natural sculpture brought forth from the womb of mother nature, its magnificent shape due to its long exposure to the sculpting forces of nature. Text credit: “National Monuments of Seychelles” by National Heritage.


The Victoria Clocktower, or Lorloz as it is better known in Creole, is the most prominent feature of Seychelles’ small capital, and has acted as a focal point for nearly 100 years. While all around massive transformation has taken place in the town centre, with modern buildings of concrete and glass springing up, the Clocktower has remained virtually unchanged. The Lorloz is an elegant replica of the clock that was first erected in London in 1897 at the junction of Victoria Street and Vauxhall Bridge Road, near Victoria Station. Seychelles' governor Sir Ernest Sweet-Escott, who had admired it during a visit to London, ordered a similar clock for Seychelles as a memorial to Queen Victoria, who died in 1901 after a reign stretching over 63 years. Made by Messrs Gillet and Johnson of Croydon, and paid for partly by public subscription, the clock was eventually erected in Victoria in 1903, the same year that Seychelles celebrated its new status as a Crown colony, administered directly by a governor appointed by London instead of from Mauritius. Originally, the clock was expected to chime, but sadly failed to do so. Today, however, the Victoria clock regularly strikes the hour, having had its mechanism completely replaced in 1999 by a modern, quartz masterclock. The work was carried out by the original manufacturer, Gillett and Johnson, with the cost again being met in Seychelles partly by public donation. The Clocktower is one of Seychelles' national monuments. (Text taken from the book "Discovering The National Monuments of Seychelles", and is used by permission from The National Heritage.)

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