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Scotland returns art looted during colonial period to India

2022-08-19T13:23:49.002Z

The city of Glasgow has handed over seven stolen works of art to India. This is a first for a British museum.



A museum in Glasgow handed over to India on Friday August 19 seven works of art looted during colonization in the 19th century, a first for a cultural institution in the United Kingdom.

These antiquities were looted from sacred places such as temples and donated to the collections of city museums.

Six of the objects were stolen from northern India in the 1800s and the seventh, a ceremonial sword dating from around the 14th century, was illegally purchased after being stolen from its original owners.

In total, the Glasgow museum has decided to return 51 objects: in addition to the seven intended for India, there are 19 bronzes from the former kingdom of Benin promised to Nigeria and 25 articles, in particular ceremonial items, from the Cheyenne River and Oglala Sioux tribes in the US state of South Dakota.

The restitutions are part of a process of evaluating the provenance of objects kept in Western museums, in the wake of movements against racism.

This ceremonial sword, dating from around the 14th century, was purchased illegally after being stolen from its original owners.

Andy Buchanan/AFP

The organization Glasgow Life, which manages the collections of the museum of the Scottish city, “today

[august 19]

welcomed

representatives of the Indian diplomatic mission for a transfer of ownership,”

said a press release.

This restitution

“marks an important step for Glasgow”

and aims to ensure that

“the rightful owners”

find these works, said Duncan Dornan, head of museums and collections at Glasgow Life, quoted in the press release.

"These objects are an integral part of our heritage as a civilization and will now be returned to their country of origin",

welcomed for his part the acting head of the Indian diplomatic mission in the United Kingdom, Sujit Ghosh, thanking

“everyone who made this possible”,

including the City of Glasgow.

Source: lefigaro

All life articles on 2022-08-19

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