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British Museum agrees to return looted Benin bronzes to Nigeria

London: A museum in London has agreed to return a collection of Benin bronzes looted from what is now Nigeria in the late 19th century.

The Horniman Museum and Gardens in southeast London has announced that it will transfer 72 pieces from its collection to the Nigerian government. The decision follows Nigeria’s National Museums and Monuments Commission formally requesting the return of the artifacts earlier this year and consultations with community members, artists and schoolchildren in Nigeria and the UK, the museum said. rice field.

A Benin copper alloy plaque depicting the meeting between Benin chief Uwange and Portuguese traders, returned to Nigeria by the Honiman Museum. credit:APs

In a statement, Yves Salomon, chair of the museum’s board of directors, said: “The evidence that these objects were forcibly acquired is very clear, and through external consultation, we will return ownership to Nigeria. “Hornimann is pleased to take this step and is working with the NCMM to promote the development of these precious crafts.” We look forward to securing long-term care.”

Horniman’s collection is only a small part of the 3,000 to 5,000 artifacts that were brought out of the Kingdom of Benin in 1897, and as Britain expanded its political and commercial influence in West Africa, British soldiers moved into the city of Benin. when you attack and occupy The British Museum alone holds more than 900 of his objects from Benin, and the National Museum of Scotland has another 74. Others were distributed to museums around the world.

Artifacts include plaques, animal and human figures, and items of royal regalia made in brass and bronze by artists working in Benin’s royal palaces. The general term Benin bronze is sometimes applied to items made of carved ivory, coral, wood, other materials, and metal.

Indigenous from countries such as Nigeria, Egypt, Greece, and North America Australiais increasingly demanding the return of artifacts and human remains amid a global reassessment of colonialism and exploitation of local populations.

A brass plaque depicting a military chief with a leather gift box and a Royal Army priest, returned from the Horniman Museum in London.

A brass plaque depicting a military chief with a leather gift box and a Royal Army priest, returned from the Horniman Museum in London.credit:APs

Nigeria and Germany recently signed a deal to return hundreds of Benin bronzes.continue French President Emmanuel Macron’s decision Last year it signed over 26 works known as the Treasures of Abomey, priceless works of art from the 19th-century Kingdom of Dahomey in what is now Benin, a small country just west of Nigeria.

But British institutions have been slow to react.

British Museum agrees to return looted Benin bronzes to Nigeria

Source link British Museum agrees to return looted Benin bronzes to Nigeria

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