British Museum insists on right of ownership

British Museum insists on right of ownership

The British Museum “firmly believes” that the parts of the Parthenon marbles lifted from the site by Lord Elgin some 220 years ago and displayed in its premises belong where they currently are. 

“The Parthenon Sculptures in London play a vital role in demonstrating the significance of ancient Athens within the context of the ancient civilizations that shaped it – Egypt and Assyria – and later cultures that were inspired by it,” the museum’s deputy director, Dr Jonathan Williams, wrote in a letter to The Daily Telegraph, in response to reports that Greece and the UK had agreed on talks over the sculptures’ possible return to Greece. 

“No new talks have taken place. We believe that extending public access is the real issue at hand. The remaining sculptures are fragments – only 50% survive. There will never be a magical moment when all of the sculptures are reunited,” Williams added.

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