“Getty museum in Los Angeles must return a 2,000-year-old bronze statue it bought for almost $4m (£3.1m) in 1977. The bronze statue was discovered by fishermen off Pesaro, on Italy’s Adriatic coast, in 1964, sold several times, and eventually bought by the American museum over 40 years ago. But Italy has always maintained that it was smuggled out of the country and acquired illegally, making its first formal request for its return from the US in 1989. After an 11-year legal battle, the supreme court rejected an appeal by the J Paul Getty Museum against an order from the Pesaro judge Giacomo Gasparini in June for the statue to be confiscated. Pesaro prosecutor Silvia Cecchi told Italian media that the supreme court ruling was “the final word from the Italian justice [system]” and that the Lysippos statue “must be returned”. Italy’s battle over the statue included a letter to the US president, Donald Trump, from art critic Vittorio Sgarbi calling on him to ensure its restitution. But the museum has refused to surrender the relic, saying it would appeal against the decision. The museum argued that the statue was discovered in international waters and pointed out that it was acquired by the museum nine years after Italy’s top court concluded there was no evidence that the statue belonged to Italy. The statue is among the most popular works at the Los Angeles museum, but its legal ownership has been in dispute ever since Getty bought it from German art dealer Herman Heinz Herzer in 1977. The sum paid was nearly 800 times the $5,600 that Italian art dealers gave to the fishermen who found it.”
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Word of the Day:
Statue – Statua
A Statue – Una statua
The statue – La statua
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