June 15, 2012

Think how wealthy Greece would be if all their treasures were returned

Posted at 1:21 pm in British Museum, Elgin Marbles, Greece Archaeology, Similar cases

It isn’t feasible to return all the artefacts that have left Greece throughout history & I don’t think anyone is seriously advocating this. However, one should reflect on how much of Greece’s wealth has been used to enrich the museums & collections of other countries, when in most cases Greece was given no compensation.

Kathimerini (English Edition)

Friday June 15, 2012
Greek elections

God bless and save Greece. May God bless Greece and all the Greeks as you make one of the biggest democratic decisions of your lives on June 17. The early Greeks invented Democracy more than 2 milleniums ago, so you should know ’the ropes’, so let us all hope and pray you make the right decision as you go to the polls on June 17. Be very mindful when you vote of how it will affect Greece.

I am an Australian and have loved your beautiful country since I first stepped foot on it in 1996. It had a certain magnetism that invited me back time and time again. I wanted to explore every Greek island and place and achieved seeing many, Mykonos, Tinos, Andros, Santorini, Paros, Ios, Naxos, Rodos, Crete, Patmos, Corfu, Kefalonia, Zakynthos, Ithaca, and there are still many, many more beautiful islands there to see, if only I could.

Because I loved it so much, I wanted to get as many Australians to also see this, so with my friend Michelle I started a Greece-oriented travel company called Mediterranean Holidays and Tours.

Now it is a shame to see what is happening to Greece, and see it struggling within the EEC and the big brother countries with more power and manufacturing and export capabilities, and in many ways we know Greece has been ’used’ over the years as a buffer zone, and has had so, so many of its treasures, and beautiful antiquities, intrinsic assets, stripped away over the years to private and museum collections all over the world. I don’t think Greece can survive outside the Euro zone now, in hindsight it probably would have been best to have stayed out initially like the British, but would be too costly and inflationary, inviting black marketeering in currency to go back to the old monetary system.

So many famous antiquities — for instance the Winged Victory, or Nike of Samothraci, and the Venus de Milo, both classical Greek statues so well known and revered now in the Paris Louvre, with only a replica remaining in Greece. Most of the portals and marbles from the Parthenon (including the Caryatid from the Acropolis), are in various museums, mostly in the British Museum, also in Berlin and the Hermitage in Russia. The Bronze Warrior of Riace, two 445 BC bronzes believed stolen by the early Romans and lost on a ship near Reggio in Italy only to be found in 1972 are now housed in the Reggio Regional Museum. Athenian amphoras are housed in the J. Paul Getty, Munich, London, Paris, Vatican etc museums.

Just think how wealthy Greece would be today if all of these treasures were returned to their rightful place. So, please, I ask the rest of the world not to dismiss and put down the Greeks because they have been responsible for so much of the beautiful and formulative philosophical thinking which is part of all of humanity.

To see more please see my blog on http://collywolsmediterraneandreams.blogspot.com.au

Colleen Woodward

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1 Comment »

  1. Konstantinos Mintsis said,

    12.12.12 at 9:52 pm

    Just needed to say a great “Thank you”, on behalf of all Greeks (or.. most of them at least).
    I’m about to migrate to Australia in a few weeks. Sad to say this, but Greece is not “the place to be” any more.

    Kind regards,

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