Skip to main content

"Homecoming" for Part of the Parthenon Frieze

A fragment of the Parthenon frieze has been returned to Greece (Επιστρέφει στην Ελλάδα θραύσμα του γλυπτού διάκοσμου του Παρθενώνα από το Παλέρμο, in.gr September 23, 2008). The sculpture forms part of the foot of Artemis from the East Frieze (Slab VI). The piece has been on display in the Museo Archeologico Regionale "Antonino Salinas". Its return reflects the growing cultural links between Italy and Greece.

The Parthenon fragment forms part of the exhibition, "Nostoi", in the New Acropolis Museum which opened yesterday (September 24, 2008). Mihalis Liapis, the Hellenic Minister of Culture spoke at the press launch. Unlike many of the other returned antiquities that have been acquired by museums and private collectors since 1970, the Parthenon fragment is a reminder that Greece considers it has a strong moral claim to cultural property removed from its soil even prior to the formation of the modern Greek state. Liapis considered the New Acropolis Museum to be one large "nostos" (το Νέο Μουσείο της Ακρόπολης είναι το μουσείο ενός μεγάλου νόστου).

Image
From in.gr.

Comments

Attis said…
[...] "that Greece considers it has a strong moral claim to cultural property removed from its soil even prior to the formation of the modern Greek state"

I think that the argument for the return of the Parthenon Marbles to Greece is not a "moral" but a scientific/archaeological one... Unless you're talking about scientific morality/integrity.
David Gill said…
The scientific / archaeological claim is that the architectural sculptures will be united in a building that overlooks the Parthenon. The New Acropolis Museum is a stunning structure that will enhance the display of these sculptures.

And then there is the issue of the integrity of these 5th century monuments.
Attis said…
Thank you, I completely agree with these arguments

Popular posts from this blog

Marble bull's head from the temple of Eshmun

Excavations at the temple of Eshmun in Lebanon recovered a marble bull's head. It is now suggested that it was this head, apparently first published in 1967, that was placed on loan to New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art (Tom Mashberg, "Met Museum Turns Over Another Relic With Disputed Past to Prosecutors", New York Times August 1, 2017 ). The head is reported to have been handed over to the Manhattan district attorney after a request was received from the Lebanese authorities.

It is suggested that the head may have been looted from an archaeological storage area at Byblos in the 1980s during the Lebanese civil war. Mashberg has rehearsed the recent collecting history:
The owners of the bull’s head, Lynda and William Beierwaltes of Colorado, say they have clear title to the item and have sued Manhattan prosecutors for its return.  The Beierwaltes bought the head from a dealer in London in 1996 for more than $1 million and then sold it to another collector, Michael …

Sardinian warrior from "old Swiss collection"

One of the Sardinian bronzes of a warrior was seized from an as yet unnamed Manahattan gallery. It appears to be the one that passed through the Royal-Athena Gallery: Art of the Ancient World 23 (2012) no. 71. The collecting history for that warrior suggests that it was acquired in 1990 from a private collection in Geneva.

Other clues suggested that the warrior has resided in a New York private collection.

The identity of the private collection in Geneva will no doubt be telling.

The warrior also features in this news story: Jennifer Peltz, "Looted statues, pottery returned to Italy after probe in NYC", ABC News May 25 2017.

Mithras relief from Tor Cervara

A fragmentary relief of Mithras was discovered in 1964 at Tor Cervara on the outskirts of Rome. It was acquired by the Museo Nazionale Romano.

A further fragment of the relief was acquired by the Badisches Landesmueum in Kalrsruhe in 1976. The source was an unstated Swiss dealer. This fragment has been reunited with the rest of the relief [press release].

Today a further fragment of the relief was reunited with the other pieces. This had been recovered during a raid in Sardinia.