Elgin marbles: should they go or should they stay

David Lee thinks loans both ways should be considered.

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We have rehearsed the pros and antis of retaining, loaning, handing back or exchanging the Elgin Marbles in the pages of the Jackdaw many times.
The main

the most shameless brainwashing.

copy" src="http://www.thejackdaw.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Acropolis-copy-300x225.jpg" alt="" width="300" height="225" srcset="http://www.thejackdaw.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Acropolis-copy-300x225.jpg 300w, http://www.thejackdaw.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Acropolis-copy-1024x768.jpg 1024w, http://www.thejackdaw.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Acropolis-copy-73x55.jpg 73w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" />The argument that these sculptures are by Greeks from a unique moment in Greek history and from which all modern Greeks are
descended is so much jingoistic claptrap. Greeks claiming descendance from the Athenian Pericles is as preposterous as me citing the ancestry of King Caractacus; as if the Roman, Angle, Saxon, Viking, Pict, Celt, Visigoth, Dane and French invaders, commonwealthers, colonisers and asylum seekers had never come between us, and changed our make up beyond recognition. It’s just silly.

As someone who simply enjoys looking at classical

sculpture, I recently visited Athens to see if workable alternatives about the future of the Elgin Marbles might be considered. Currently, the issue is clouded by irritating, point-scoring politicians intent on manipulating publics for their own ends. All those who love sculpture and art history should have an //--> important say in any outcome because src="//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/show_ads.js"> in the end we are the only ones who will actually //--> take the trouble to look at them properly.

From the /* xin-1 */ outside the new Acropolis museum is as inelegant as most new buildings,

its one quirk being a penthouse floor twisted from true as if a Rubik’s cube had had its top layer half-turned. What was left of the Acropolis sculptures after the explosion of 1687 when the Parthenon blew up destroying most of
its peristyle and interior, not to mention assorted subsequent lootings, defacings, quarryings and Elgin’s removals,


is exhibited on the top floor with gaps left where the frieze and pediment sculptures from other museums, chiefly the BM, would fit in.

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Having been eroded smooth and rounded by the most poisonous atmosphere of any city in Europe, much of this material is of disappointing impact and quality.
Snatches of google_ad_client = "ca-pub-3967079123942817"; detail and passages of beauty hint at what might have been, but little in

if Elgin had not removed sculptures their

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survival may have been jeopardised. This cuts no ice in Greece because wherever you travel Elgin is presented as the Great Satan. The poor wee Scot

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is denounced in tube stations, museums, airports and on street placards, and even at remote archaeological sites across the country. Nowhere is there any acknowledgement that without Elgin’s intervention during a volatile //--> period of

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foreign occupation, there might be little worth a second look.

The argument that the nearly complete frieze would be exhibited within sight of its original location has some little merit. From one side of the new museum (see picture above) one can look up to the rear, less photogenic aspect of the Parthenon, though you can’t see where the frieze

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would originally have been placed because

​ it was obliterated in the explosion and subsequent collapses, earthquakes and demolitions. It was in any case more

or less invisibly located high behind the peristyle arcade.

In its other galleries the Acropolis