The Wallace Collection in London holds Asante regalia, that is discovered as the largest gold work from anywhere in Africa outside Egypt. This regalia was however taken, during the course of a British invasion in 1873. Cases such as this highlight that it is not just the larger museums in the UK that hold disputed artefacts, but also many of the smaller ones. One wonders whether if these smaller museums that are less heavily regulated were to agree to return some of the disputed items in their collections, then it would persuade the larger institutions to follow their example.
WHEN WILL BRITAIN RETURN LOOTED GOLDEN GHANAIAN ARTEFACTS? A HISTORY OF BRITISH LOOTING OF MORE THAN 100 OBJECTS
Author: Kwame Opoku, Dr.
Feature Article | Wed, 05 Jan 2011
A recent visit to London reminded me that apart from the British Museum, and the Victoria and Albert Museum many other museums in London and elsewhere in the United Kingdom are still holding onto African cultural artefacts which, to put it very mildly, were removed from the continent under conditions and circumstances which can be considered as questionable. One such museum is the Wallace Collection, London. (2)
Once in the museum, our attention was drawn to the Asante golden trophy head and swords which are displayed in the Wallace Collection. This spectacular piece of the Asante regalia looted by the British has been described by Fagg as “the largest gold work known from Ashanti or indeed from anywhere in Africa outside Egypt”. (3)
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