jueves, 4 de diciembre de 2014

Prince Charles and the Mexican city with 'more pasties than Cornwall'

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall on Sunday visited a remote Mexican mining town to pay tribute to hundreds of British expatriates who brought football and Cornish pasties to the American country two centuries ago. The royal couple spent the day in Pachuca and nearby Real del Monte, 60 miles north of Mexico City, an area nicknamed "Mexico's Little Cornwall" for its close ties to the West Country. They laid a wreath at the memorial of a Mexican-British soldier who died in the First World War, placed the first turf on a new football pitch and visited the world's only pasty museum.
Hundreds of Cornish families moved to Pachuca and Real del Monte in the 1820s for a new life working in silver mines that had fallen into decline. They not only brought mining expertise and 1,500 tonnes of equipment to revitalise the area, but also British culture, which remains to this day.
Pachuca now hosts international pasty, or "paste", festivals and houses an official Fifa football museum to recognise that the country's first club was founded there in 1901, once the Cornish had settled. The city's old clock tower even chimes like Big Ben. Stephen Lay, a spokesman for the Cornish Mexican Cultural Society, said: "It's uncanny, the Cornish influence is abundantly clear even today – pasties are probably even more popular and widely produced than in Cornwall itself."
Around 350 Cornish miners, wives and children sailed to Mexico on three ships in the early 1820s, with the first arriving in 1824. It took them 14 months to haul their equipment 250 miles from the coast to the inland Pachuca and Real del Monte in what is remembered as the "Great Trek" in Mexican folklore.
Private Vial's father, James, from Camborne, Cornwall, is believed to have joined the diaspora in 1881. "Vial" was an adaptation of Veale, the original family name, according to Gill Riffat, whose great, great grandfather, Francis Rule, provided the funds to build Pachuca's Big Ben clock. Private Vial, born in 1894, was 22 when he died of wounds in the Somme in February 1916 serving as a gunner in the Royal Field Artillery. His body is buried at the St. Sever cemetery in Rouen, France, and the plaque in the Panteón Ingles in Real del Monte, near Pachuca is a memorial, according to Mike Kiernan of the Cornish Global Migration Programme. Around 600 of the 700 people buried in the cemetery visited by Charles and Camilla are of Cornish origin, Mr Lay said, many of whom died young in the mines.
The first day of the royal visit fell on the Day of the Dead, a colourful Mexican religious festival where people gather to pray for and remember friends and family who have died and visit their graves. Charles and Camilla also joined celebrations in Real del Monte's town centre, where they saw traditional altars made to mark the occasion known as Olfrenda and watch an Aztec dance exhibition. Later they visited a local secondary school built close to where football was first played in Mexico. The first day of a four-day visit ended with afternoon tea with locals at the pasty museum.

Question 1 (2 points) Indicate whether the following statements are true or false and write down which part of the text justifies your answer.

a. Pachuca is called Mexico’s Little Cornwall because people from the West of England emigrated there.
b.Cornish families moved to Pachuca to try to discover new silver mines.
c. Little remains of the cultural influence of Cornish people in Mexico.
d.On the day of Dead in Mexico, there is a quiet solemn atmosphere.

Question 2 (2 points) Answer the following questions in your own words.

a. What 3 official acts did Charles and Camilla do on their day in Pachuca?
b. How many Cornish people went to Mexico, how did they travel and what did they do for the first 14 months?

Question 3 (1.5 points) Find words or phrases in the text that correspond in meaning to the words and definitions given.

a. Isolated  (para.1)                       b. bunch of flowers  (para. 1)                 c. hold (para. 3)                               
d. start living in a place (para. 3)       e. front part of church/temple (para. 6)

Question 4 (1.5 points) Complete the following sentences without changing the meaning.

a. They joined celebrations in Real Monte’s town centre, then they visited a local secondary school.
b. People say that the soldier fought in the First World War.
c. Pachuca now hosts international pasty festivals and houses an official Fifa fooftball Museum.
International pasty festivals………………………and an official Fifa football museum………………………….

Question 5 (3 points) Write a short essay (120-150 words) on the following topic:

How important do you think it is for people to maintain their cultural traditions? Give reasons.

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