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Heidelberg’s piece of the Parthenon

The Hellenic Ministry of Culture have issued a press release on the proposed return [1] of the fragment of the Parthenon Marbles currently held by the Heidelberg University.

Hellenic Ministry of Culture [2]

Athens, 09.01.2006

Today, on Monday 9th January 2006, a meeting was held between the Prime Minister and Minister of Culture Mr. Kostas Karamanlis, the Deputy Minister of Culture Mr. Petros Tatoulis and the Vice-rector of the University of Heidelberg Mr. Angelos Chaniotis, in order to announce the return to Athens of a fragment belonging to the Parthenon’s Frieze from the aforementioned University.

Mr. Chaniotis informed the Prime Minister that the fragment, which represents a male figure’s foot from the N. Frieze of Parthenon, is going to be returned to Greece, given the fact that a positive recommendation has been addressed to the Rectorate by the Institute of Classical Archaeology, the Director of which is Mr. T. Hölscher.

The Rectorate will hold a meeting in the next days, in order to accept the Institute’s recommendation. Mr. Chaniotis assured the Prime Minister on behalf of the Rectorate that there is a positive disposition for the immediate return of the fragment to Greece within the current year.

This gesture is of great importance and has a symbolic character, considering that it is the first fragment from the Parthenon’s sculptures which returns to Greece. It has the capability of being affixed to the rest of the slab which is in the Acropolis Museum. This gesture, as Mr. Chaniotis pointed out, has been made in the name of the international community, since the University considered that it has a duty to humanity and the Parthenon itself, as a unique monument of the world heritage.