News

London museum to return looted Benin Bronzes to Nigeria

August 7, 2022 11:53 PM


Twitter Share Facebook Share WhatsApp Share

London's Horniman Museum on Sunday said that it would return dozens of artifacts looted by British soldiers in Nigeria, including 12 of the famed Benin Bronzes.

"Ownership of 72 objects, which were forcibly removed from Benin City during the British military incursion in February 1897, will be transferred to the Nigerian government," the museum said in a statement.

"The collection includes 12 brass plaques, known publicly as Benin bronzes. Other objects include a brass cockerel altar piece, ivory and brass ceremonial objects, brass bells, everyday items such as fans and baskets, and a key ‘to the king’s palace’," it said.

Thousands of Nigeria's so-called Benin Bronzes -- 16th to 18th century metal plaques and sculptures -- were looted from the palace of the ancient Benin Kingdom and ended up in museums across the US and Europe.

Nigeria has been negotiating their return and plans to build a museum in Benin City in southern Edo state, where it hopes to house the bronzes, some of the most highly regarded works of African art.

"The evidence is very clear that these objects were acquired through force, and external consultation supported our view that it is both moral and appropriate to return their ownership to Nigeria," the museum quoted Eve Salomon, Chair of the Trustees of the Horniman Museum and Gardens, as saying.

The head of Nigeria's National Commission for Museums and Monuments, Abba Tijani, welcomed the decision and said he was looking "forward to a productive discussion on loan agreements and collaborations."

Apart from Britain, France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany have also received requests from African countries to return lost treasures.

Experts estimate that 85 to 90 percent of African cultural artifacts were taken from the continent.

On July 1, Germany signed an agreement to begin sending back hundreds of Benin Bronzes to Nigeria, the biggest effort yet by a European country to return looted artworks.

Germany has around 1,100 of the artifacts, split between some 20 museums.



Most Read

  1. Punjab ministry, school education dept toy with summer vacations announcement Punjab ministry, school education dept toy with summer vacations announcement
  2. Iran President Raisi, foreign minister die in helicopter crash Iran President Raisi, foreign minister die in helicopter crash
  3. Sarah Ali Khan to tie the knot with a rich guy this year, say rumors Sarah Ali Khan to tie the knot with a rich guy this year, say rumors
  4. Anmol Baloch brushes off dating rumours with Hamza Sohail Anmol Baloch brushes off dating rumours with Hamza Sohail
  5. 'Heeramandi's 'Tajdar', Taha Shah’s handsome debut at Cannes is everything fans wanted 'Heeramandi's 'Tajdar', Taha Shah’s handsome debut at Cannes is everything fans wanted
  6. NA148 by-polls results: PPP’s Qasim Gilani leading with 78,278 votes NA148 by-polls results: PPP’s Qasim Gilani leading with 78,278 votes

Opinion

  1. New twist in PTI founder’s strategy towards Military Establishment
    New twist in PTI founder’s strategy towards Military Establishment

    By Salim Bokhari

  2. Revoke the heat stroke
    Revoke the heat stroke

    By Dr Asif Channer

  3. Defiance, sacrifice & national resilience
    Defiance, sacrifice & national resilience

    By Naveed Aman Khan

  4. Maryam Nawaz Sharif's Police Uniform: Breaking Gender Stereotypes, Not Minds
    Maryam Nawaz Sharif's Police Uniform: Breaking Gender Stereotypes, Not Minds

    By Alysha Khan

  5. Pak-Saudi-Iran economic proximity
    Pak-Saudi-Iran economic proximity

    By News Desk

  6. Military Establishment rules out any deal with what it terms a ‘bunch of anarchists’
    Military Establishment rules out any deal with what it terms a ‘bunch of anarchists’

    By Salim Bokhari