Saturday, August 28, 2010

Antiquities from Greece

Greece has requested that the USA consider imposing import restrictions on antiquities that have their origins in Greece. Such a move is timely. It appears that in 2007 a Greek investigative journalist identified three items in a North American university collection (and AAMD member) that appeared to have been removed from archaeological contexts in recent times. Indeed two of the pieces appear to feature in photographic archives seized in Switzerland. The museum issued a press release in 2008. The acquisitions had been made in the last ten years.

In 2009 I reviewed some of the recent returns to Greece. While the J. Paul Getty Museum and Shelby White have been willing to return objects to Greece, it seems that other museums are reluctant to negotiate.

Is there any surprise that the Greek authorities have made a formal request to restrict the trade in recently surfaced archaeological material when an AAMD museum behaves in this manner?

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Source: Enet.

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