US returns artefacts to Italy

May 27, 2015 1419

The United States has returned 25 artefacts that were looted from Italy, including Etruscan vases, 1st-century frescoes and precious books that had made their way into top US museum, university and private collections. The items were either spontaneously turned over or were seized by police after Italian authorities noticed them in Christie's auction catalogues or gallery listings and tipped them off.

One 17th-century Venetian cannon was seized by Boston border patrol agents as it was being smuggled from Egypt inside construction equipment. US ambassador John Phillips joined Italy's Carabinieri police to show off the haul, which included Etruscan vases from the Toledo Museum of Art and the Minneapolis Institute of Art, and 17th-century botany books from Johns Hopkins University.

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