Home Interior Design 5th-century vase, one of 351 artifacts recently repatriated to Greece, is a known fake, forensic archaeologist says

5th-century vase, one of 351 artifacts recently repatriated to Greece, is a known fake, forensic archaeologist says

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Controversy continues to swirl around antiques once owned by British art dealer Robin Symes. After the Greek government announced last week the conclusion of a 17-year battle to repatriate 351 artifacts recovered from Symes, forgery detective Christos Tsirogiannis pointed out that one of the items returning home is actually a known fake.

The comprehensive cache dating back to Greece covers bronze, marble and earthenware vessels from the Neolithic and Byzantine eras, including a Olpe, or wine vase, representing a satyr and a goat. Talk to The GuardianTsirogiannis said this particular vase was the subject of a 1998 article in an archeology journal Minerva by scholar Dietrich von Bothmer, who considered the characters on the surface of the object a “modern fake”, most likely painted in the 1990s.

Not only had the forger added chipping and abrasion to give the surface an air of authenticity, but he “didn’t realize that [this] object, if it had been made in a workshop in the attic [antiquity], would have had an additional red stripe around its middle as the only hint of color,” von Bothmer wrote. “That red line now appears below and beyond the freshly added numbers, an overlooked detail that makes the finished product a modern faux.”

Nevertheless, the vase was among the brief sample of repatriated antiquities listed in the May 19 announcement of the Greek Ministry of Culture and Sports, dated “beginning of the 5th century BC.

Tsirogiannis called government surveillance “absolutely disgraceful”, given research published by von Bothmer. Greek Culture Minister Lina Mendoni stressed that her team had “worked systematically and methodically” to study the unearthed caches of Symes’ claws, particularly over the past three years.

“It exposes the real level of research,” Tsirogiannis said. The Guardian. “They had 17 years to do this well, especially since the Minister of Culture is an archaeologist herself.”

A Greek spokesperson has since noted that Mendoni could not comment further because a new minister would soon replace her, after the elections last Sunday. “However, a comment from the Ministry’s leadership is that in cases of recovery of illegally trafficked antiquities, any further research on them is carried out when the antiquities are back in Greek museums” , they said. “Only then is it possible to study them in depth and, if necessary, to carry out analyzes in the laboratory.”

Tsirogiannis thinks there could be more “nasty surprises” in store.

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