This Italian Museum Displays The Stolen Art It’s Recovered

Over the years, thousands of valuable art objects might have been either lost or stolen. But luckily some of these pieces have been recovered by the police or found in the possession of someone who had no idea they were actually priceless historical artifacts. The Museum for Rescued Art in Rome, which opened its doors last month, will display artifacts that were stolen from across the country and smuggled into the United States. Roughly 100 Etruscan, Greek and Roman artifacts will be on display in the museum’s first exhibit.

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Some of these artifacts on display are carved Etruscan figurines and painted jars. These artifacts go back as far as the fourth century BCE and are incredibly delicate. One of the most noteworthy pieces on display is a forty inches high, red and white jar dating from the seventh century BCE. The design and the carvings on the jar tell the story of the blinding of Polyphemus, a giant of Greek Mythology, who’s referenced in Homer’s Odyssey.

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The museum will periodically change its displays. The pieces that are currently shown will stay until October 15th. Despite the Italian recovery effort that’s principally led by the Carabinieri Unit for the Protection of Cultural Heritage, founded in 1969, there is one artifact that Commander General Teo Luzi has his eye on. In a recent interview at the museum’s opening, Luzi mentioned how he hopes Italy will recover the Statue of a Victorious Youth, which was created in 300-100 BC. In the 1960s, an Italian fishing boat discovered the statue, and in 1977, the J. Paul Getty Museum bought it. Despite a 2018 court ruling to return the statue, the Getty Museum still possesses it.