- De verloren tempels van Caere en Caprifico: conflicterende belangen bij de teruggave van geroofde archeologica
- TMA: tijdschrift voor mediterrane archeologie
- Volume | Issue number
- 21 | 41
- Pages (from-to)
- 45-52, 54
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR)
The lost temples of Caere and Caprifico. Conflicting interests concerning the return of looted antiquities
This article tries to unravel the complexity of the position of the independent archaeologist in the politics of publishing looted antiquities. During the process of publishing material belonging to Archaic temple roofs in Caere (Etruria) and Caprifico (Latium) in the last ten years, the author was forced into an uncomfortable position between the Italian authorities and European museums that had been asked to return the stolen properties to Italy. While a solution to the problem still seems out of reach concerning the collection of Caeretan architectural terracottas held in custody by the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek in Copenhagen, fragments of a demolished roof from Caprifico, once forming part of collections of both the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford and the Antikenmuseum in Basel, found their way back to their original homeland in Cori (Latium). The author stresses that publication of looted material should not be blocked by laws and opinions formulated in the battle for the return of the archeological objects. Instead, publication should be the ultimate goal in the archaeological world and European heritage politics. A new international policy regarding the repatriation of archaeological heritage is desired, not in the least by many Italian academics. Such a policy should emphasize an atmosphere of respectful negotiation between the different participants. In the view of the author, it is a European responsibility to provide the opportunity for specialists to continue publishing illegally acquired archaeological objects without the restrictions of the current political situations and controversies.
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