Hiker Discovers 3,500 Year Old Seal and Returns it

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Sphinx Seal Impression

Last month, an Israeli hiker exploring the Horns of Hattin in the Lower Galilee chanced upon an oval, beetle-shaped seal that likely surfaced as a result of recent thunderstorms in the area. The area of the discovery is well known as the site of a former fortified citadel dating to the Late Bronze Age. Upon discovery and out of curiosity, the man contacted the Israeli Antiquities Authority, who … Read More

Argentina and Spain Return Thousands of Artifacts to Peru and Ecuador

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Moche Earrings

Over 4,000 cultural heritage items have been returned to Peru this week after having been seized from traffickers and art collectors almost 16 years ago, in Buenos Aires. The artifacts include pre-Columbian items, metals, textiles, wood, ceramics and bone, and constitute the largest amount of cultural artifacts to be returned to date. Argentina and Spain are also returning over 500 artifacts to Ecuador, adding to … Read More

Illegally Looted Roman and Etruscan Antiquities Found in Geneva

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Pompeii House

Italy’s Carabinieri art crime investigation unit recently discovered forty-five crates containing Etruscan and Roman antiquities in Geneva, Switzerland. Experts speculate that these pieces were left in Switzerland for fifteen years by Robin Symes, a dealer who has served time for contempt of court. When artifacts are improperly removed from their source, cultural and historical context is lost. Pompeii, an archaeological site famous … Read More

Four Years Later and Still Going Strong

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Euphronios Krater

Just four years after its founding in 2012, Trafficking Culture is well-known as one of the foremost research initiatives for the study of the illicit trade of antiquities. Established with the support of a four-year grant from the European Research Council (ERC), Neil Brodie (SAFE’s 2008 Beacon Award Winner), Simon Mackenzie, Donna Yates, and Christos Tsirogiannis worked together from their … Read More

Employees Face Fines for King Tut’s Restoration

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King Tuthankhamun

Eight employees from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Egypt face heavy fines for reckless destruction of King Tutankamun. It was found that they violated many of the scientific and professional standards for restoration, specifically improperly gluing of the mask’s beard. King Tut is one the most oldest artifacts dating to 3,300 years. Click here to read the full story. Photo: King Tuthankamen’s burial … Read More

The Antiquities Coalition Releases Interactive Map of Culture Under Threat

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Antiquities Coalition. 2016. “Culture Under Threat Map,” The Antiquities Coalition

The global heritage destruction caused by Daesh and other terrorist groups is sadly in the news all to often. Yet when their activities are viewed as individual incidents it can be difficult to grasp the scale and scope of cultural devastation that is being inflicted across the region. In effort to visually show the broad scale of cultural heritage destruction … Read More

Peru’s Ministry of Culture Announces New National Museum of Archaeology

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Machu Pichu

Peru’s Ministry of Culture has revealed that they will begin work on a new museum devoted to the nation’s archeological wealth. This project will help Peru protect and display it’s cultural heritage. There is certainly a need for this in Peru since the minister of the organization, Diana Alvarez-Calderón Gallo, has stated that there are 500,000 artifacts, which need a place to be … Read More

Alaaddin Mosque Restoration Scandal Investigated

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800px-Alaedin_Camii

In Antalya, Turkey – a city surrounded by the Taurus Mountains, the Mediterranean coast, and much to do – the crown gate of the Alaaddin Mosque underwent restoration. However, it was recently revealed that the structure had been broken into pieces and that no visible measures had been taken to protect the very rare stones, which dated back 800 years. The … Read More

Stricter Antiquites Laws Anticipated in Pakistan

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Pakistan is in the process of strengthening their cultural heritage protection laws. The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Antiquities Bill 2015 has received provincial cabinet approval, and is now waiting on final provincial assembly approval. The bill greatly increases the imprisonment times and fines for damaging, smuggling, and counterfeiting antiquities. It would also create a cultural heritage conservation board “responsible to control illegal … Read More

ISIS’ Cultural Heritage Destruction Largest Since WWII

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Iraq Nimrud - Assyria Lamassu's Guarding Palace Entrance

ISIS –  also known as the Islamic State, ISIL, and Daesh – has looted up to $300 million worth of antiquities in the Middle East. The group targets museums and cultural sites for artifacts to sell on the black market. This provides a significant source of funding for the terrorist organization. The problem lies herewithin recovering the stolen, and sometimes … Read More