NEWS

A successful summer for returns

In terms of antiquities returned, this summer’s output has been highly impressive. On June 12, archaeological artifacts originating from Kythnos were repatriated. Kenneth Honea of Northern Illinois University had taken them in 1970, «without the necessary permit from the Culture Ministry and which he desired to return to Greece after his death.» The antiquities were returned to Kythnos on June 13. The quest for the ancient Roman silver coin (denarius) decorated with the head of Brutus started in June 2005. The Greek Embassy in London was informed that «Greeks on a one-day visit to London had sold a rare silver denarius with Brutus’ head for a large sum of money to the Classical Numismatic Group, Inc.» It was a rare coin that was issued during the Roman civil wars by a mobile military mint that had followed the rebels Brutus and Cassius. «The specific mint dates from the summer of 43 BC (when Brutus took the title of emperor) until the final battle in Philippi in October 42 BC, probably at the end of the summer and autumn of 42 BC,» said the report. The origin of these coins, preserved in state and private collections, is known for only four of them, two of which are in the Pella Museum. Last April, legal action was initiated with the help of the embassy and a lawyer representing the Greek state against the British dealership, based on a European Union directive on the repatriation of cultural goods illegally removed from the territory of a member. On June 5, the denarius was handed over by the British company to the authorized lawyer and on June 27, Vanna Solomonidou from the Greek Embassy in London delivered the coin to the Culture Ministry.