In the wake of the UK’s recent rejection of the bill proposing reunification of the Parthenon Marbles, I thought I’d add a few words on the subject.
I’ll add these to the page dedicated to this subject under the Art & Archaeology heading soon, but I do believe this to be a subject about which people should be well-informed.
Controversial to the extreme, the “Elgin” Marbles (I mock the commonplace use of Elgin to describe these antiques – preferring ‘Parthenon’ to be used in its place) were practically plundered from around the ancient acropolis in Athens 200 years ago, and now find themselves in the British Museum – a museum built no less, for the sole purpose of housing these spoils after Lord Elgin sold them to the British Government.
The issue now at stake is whether or not the Marbles should be returned to the Acropolis Museum in Athens, which now has the facilities to preserve them. Before directing you to the page whereat I go into greater depth, I’d like to affirm my support for reunification of these masterpieces by Pheidias with their rightful home in Greece. Before, it was their preservation which was of utmost importance, now – with both Britain and Greece having the means to do so – the problem becomes one with legal caveats and nationalistic undertones.