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The Parthenon scolptures in the british museum

The sculptures from Parthenon, known as the Elgin Marbles, is a large collection of marble sculptures that were transferred to Britain in 1806 by Thomas Bruce, Lord of Elgin, ambassador to the Ottoman Empire from 1799 until 1803. Taking advantage of the Ottoman rule in Greece, he acquired by the Ottoman Sultan a licence for the purpose of measuring and painting them. Having this licence he put down from the temple the most important sculptures and  took them to England. The sculptures were stored in the British Museum in London in 1816.

This collection of sculptures includes some of the sculptures of the Parthenon frieze, with battles between the Lapithians and and Centaurs , representing more than half from what remains of the decoration of the Parthenon sculptures that survived. The marbles of Elgin include objects from other buildings of the Athenian Acropolis and the Erechtheion, the Propylaia and the Temple of Athena Nike. Lord Elgin took approximately half of the sculptures of Parthenon.

The late great Greek actress and politician Melina Mercury as former minister of Culture tried to get the Elgin marbles back to Greece, the effort was supported by the Greek government the Greek people and numerous organisations and personalities of the arts and sciences worldwide.   In a notice issued by the British Museum in April 2007, stated that it did not intend to transfer any  ownership of the Parthenon sculptures in Greece or any Greek museum.



parthenon frieze

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