Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Replica of Bergama Altar to be Erected

Perhaps this may be a viable alternative to repatriation. Recently, I attended the current traveling King Tut exhibit and saw a chest from Tut's tomb that had been replicated. The replica is on display at the King Tut exhibit at the Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. If they had been placed side by side, I, as knowledgable but a non-expert, would not be able to detect the difference.

ZAMAN DAILY NEWSPAPER : "The Turkish Culture Ministry will erect a replica of the Bergama (ancient Pergamum or Pergamon) Zeus Altar, which is now on display in the Berlin Pergamon Museum, and attach a sign indicating the original is held in Berlin.

Turkish Culture and Tourism Minister Atilla Koc told The New Anatolian that he is deeply saddened about the artifacts lost by being smuggled out of Turkey and that their return must not be compromised.

Koc informed Turkey signed a related international agreement, but does not work retroactively. 'There is no chance of having the altar returned from Germany, because we have no legal right. But now we have a new project. The exact copies (replicas) of those historical artifacts will be built on the original sites. We will erect signs that read for example, 'The original of this replica is now in the Berlin Museum.'

Koc said they will meet with foreign authorities and suggest similar signs attached to the original artifacts in their museums; for the Bergama Altar a notice for example, it should read, 'This altar was brought here from Bergama, Turkey.'"