In a New York Times
story titled “The Great Giveback,” Hugh Eakin writes how major American museums are relinquishing antiquities due to foreign claims that various objects were looted.
The piece goes on to talk about the aggressive nature of some foreign governments and the demands they make on the museums to give back what they claim is rightfully theirs.
“Other museums across the country -- including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and the Cleveland Museum of Art -- have also given up prized antiquities,” Eakin writes.
What's more: "In nearly every case, the museums have not been compelled by any legal ruling to give up the art, nor are they receiving compensation for doing so. And while a few of the returned works have been traced to particular sites or matched with other fragments residing in the claimant country, many of them have no known place of origin."
"Foreign governments’ tactics have become so threatening that some museums are now combing through their permanent collections and pre-emptively giving up works that might become the targets of future claims."
Read the lengthy feature here