Thursday 24 July 2014

Sekhemka Statue Vanishes

"Well, it was here a minute ago,
what have you done with it?"
It's official - Northampton Museum's Sekhemka statue has ended up in private hands according to the BBC:
 A 4,000-year-old Egyptian statue sold by Northampton Museum has been bought by a private collector, it has emerged. Auction house Christie's of London said the buyer wanted to remain anonymous. The statue of Sekhemka, court official and priest, which sold for £15.76m, will now vanish from public view, campaigners said [...] The Save Our Sekhemka Action Group said: "The people of Northampton have been robbed in broad daylight of the jewel in the crown of their museum. "This looks like the worst possible outcome for the world of Egyptology. "There is now no guarantee that the statue of Sekhemka will ever be seen again, even by professional researchers, let alone by the children who might be inspired to find out more about the riches of Egyptian history and culture." His Excellency Ahsraf Elkholy Ahsraf Elkholy, the Egyptian Ambassador, condemned the sale
The news was greeted with fury by the “Save Our Sekhemka Action Group” a spokesperson for the group told an online newspaper ('Sekhemka is like Gollum's "precious" say critics as Christie's confirm sale of statue to private collector', Heritage Daily,  July 23rd, 2014):
“Thanks to Cllr Mackintosh and Northampton Council, it looks as if Sekhemka may have been turned into the Egyptian equivalent of Gollum’s “precious” to be hidden away and even gloated over as a secret fantasy object.”


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