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Nefertiti
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 1:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

khazarkhum wrote:
This is not a pristine piece directly from a properly documented site. ...

I totally incomprehensible how you come to such a statement. The excavations at Amarna done by Ludwig Borchardt for the German Orientgesellschaft and finance by Simon are appropriately documented, following the standarts at that time. Even his hand - written digdiary is preserved and accessible.

khazarkhum wrote:
... This is a piece which has a highly troubling history, from the vague & contradictory statements regarding its discovery, ...

The discovery of the bust is described by Borchard to the last detail. What are you mean with "vague & contradictory statements regarding its discovery" ??

khazarkhum wrote:
... to how it managed to make its way into Germany, ...

Same with that, described in detail ...

khazarkhum wrote:
... to why it languished in a private collection for so long. ...

Because Simon, the man who gave the money for the excavations in Amarna was the owner of all the finds. Later he donated them to the Berlin Museum. Totaly normal for that time.

Lutz
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khazarkhum
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 8:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We'll start with just one comment.

khazarkhum wrote:
... to how it managed to make its way into Germany, ...

Same with that, described in detail ...

Lutz[/quote]

Are you referring to the saga of how he smuggled it out?
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Borchardt did not had to "smuggle" anything. After the offical division of the finds Simon was the owner of the bust. It was send to Germany absolutely legally and with knowing of the Office of Antiquities in Egypt.

Lutz
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khazarkhum
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lutz wrote:
Borchardt did not had to "smuggle" anything. After the offical division of the finds Simon was the owner of the bust. It was send to Germany absolutely legally and with knowing of the Office of Antiquities in Egypt.

Lutz


Do you honestly believe that any official would permit it to leave Egypt if it were genuine?
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

khazarkhum wrote:
Lutz wrote:
Borchardt did not had to "smuggle" anything. After the offical division of the finds Simon was the owner of the bust. It was send to Germany absolutely legally and with knowing of the Office of Antiquities in Egypt.

Lutz


Do you honestly believe that any official would permit it to leave Egypt if it were genuine?

Do you honestly believe they would like to have it back if it is a fake ?

Lutz
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khazarkhum
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 3:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lutz wrote:
khazarkhum wrote:
Lutz wrote:
Borchardt did not had to "smuggle" anything. After the offical division of the finds Simon was the owner of the bust. It was send to Germany absolutely legally and with knowing of the Office of Antiquities in Egypt.

Lutz


Do you honestly believe that any official would permit it to leave Egypt if it were genuine?

Do you honestly believe they would like to have it back if it is a fake ?

Lutz


Oooh, question with a question. Nice dodge there.

Let's start over. Can you honestly, seriously, truly say that someone from the antiquities department would let what is unquestionably a masterpiece leave the country during a division of finds if it were indeed genuine?

For that to happen, the official would have to be 1, drunk; 2, stupid; 3, bribed; 4 lied to.

Which of those is most plausible? I'll tell you what I think: Borchardt told them the truth: it wasn't genuine, it was something he'd done. And that's why they let it go.

Do I think the Egyptians would want it back if it were fake?

It's become a point of honor and pride for both sides. At this point in time admitting they've been bickering over something that is not what it seems would be colossally embarrassing for both.
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Ikon
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is an important fact missing here. At this time Egyptians were not in full control of their own country. Effectively Egypt was a mostly British, though with French support, protectorate, with British and French "advisors" sitting in Egyptian government. Would these two countries, the most prolific plunderers of Egypt, be too concerned about what they let out of the country? I agree that the Nefertiti bust left Egypt within the law, though was it moral to take such an object from Egyptians who had no real control of their own country. There are similarities here with Parthenon frieze, where third party countries, or individuals, take items from a country that does not control it's own affairs. Greece was occupied by Ottoman Turks, so it was like, say, an American going into occupied France in 1940 and buying Mona Lisa from General in command of Paris. I think French would have moral high ground to say give it back!. Situation is similar with not just Nefertiti bust, but many many other artifacts. Hmm, I opened a can of worms I think.....
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khazarkhum
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ikon wrote:
There is an important fact missing here. At this time Egyptians were not in full control of their own country. Effectively Egypt was a mostly British, though with French support, protectorate, with British and French "advisors" sitting in Egyptian government. Would these two countries, the most prolific plunderers of Egypt, be too concerned about what they let out of the country? I agree that the Nefertiti bust left Egypt within the law, though was it moral to take such an object from Egyptians who had no real control of their own country. There are similarities here with Parthenon frieze, where third party countries, or individuals, take items from a country that does not control it's own affairs. Greece was occupied by Ottoman Turks, so it was like, say, an American going into occupied France in 1940 and buying Mona Lisa from General in command of Paris. I think French would have moral high ground to say give it back!. Situation is similar with not just Nefertiti bust, but many many other artifacts. Hmm, I opened a can of worms I think.....


The head of Antiquities was French. The French at the time were not exactly best friends with Germany. Anything removed by archeologists was supposed to be matched by something equivalent left for Egypt, with unique pieces remaining in Cairo.

So what from the collection is equivalent?
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 10, 2012 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

khazarkhum wrote:
... The head of Antiquities was French. ...

"Service d'Antiquités Égyptiennes" or "Département d'Antiquités" (today "Supreme Council of Antiquities" or short the "SCA"), director in 1912 was Gaston Maspero. His representative and responsible for the division was Gustave Lefebvre. Conformity with the diging contract arbitrated Borchardt the findings in two parts and Lefebvre had the first choice for the Museum Cairo. Borchardt knew Maspero wanted an house - altar - piece with the royal family for the Museum Cairo. This altar - piece (JE 44865) was your "equivalent".

In addition Borchardt gave to consideration that it would make sense from a scientific point of view to get the statue findings from the workshop as a fund complex and not to part them.

Lutz
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herper
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 1:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lets not forget at this time very few Egyptians were studying Ancient Egyptian history and few seemed to care what happened to ancient objects. With that in mind its easy to see how items left the country in such large amounts.
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Meretseger
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

KK, it seems unbelievable to us that anybody could be blind enough to let pass a piece like Nefertiti but inattention or lack of discrimination is not impossible. IMO such an error of judgment is perhaps more likely in the case of a dull and slightly battered limestone bust but we cannot entirely dismiss the possibility of a dusty painted and plastered Nefertiti also being overlooked.

Lutz's point about the Egyptian government being unlikely to make a fuss over a bust they are suspicious of is a legitimate one. Of course they could be mistaken - or they could want to make up for that long dead inspector's error.
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khazarkhum
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Meretseger wrote:

Lutz's point about the Egyptian government being unlikely to make a fuss over a bust they are suspicious of is a legitimate one. Of course they could be mistaken - or they could want to make up for that long dead inspector's error.


Yes, it is possible that someone rubber stamped its exit. Borchardt may also have done a little bit of quick talking--"you guys want stone, this is plaster" type of thing.

However, as to why the Egyptians would fight so hard : It's a point of pride & honor. Egyptians are very much driven by pride and honor. So are Germans. Should it prove false, the embarrassment would be catastrophic for both.

If they had not been fighting as hard (thanks, in no small part, to Zahi Hawass) they might actually relish the idea of exposing it.
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

khazarkhum wrote:
... Egyptians are very much driven by pride and honor. So are Germans. ...

I do not know were your very special knowledge about the Egyptian and the German people comes from ... But I can say as a native German and regular visitor to Egypt (with many native friends there) we are not only proud but also not stupid. At least we can count on 10 fingers that such a conspiracy designed by you (on nothing than your fantasy) may not be possible to realise. It would simply not work in practice ...

Lutz
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khazarkhum
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 11:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lutz wrote:
khazarkhum wrote:
... Egyptians are very much driven by pride and honor. So are Germans. ...

I do not know were your very special knowledge about the Egyptian and the German people comes from ... But I can say as a native German and regular visitor to Egypt (with many native friends there) we are not only proud but also not stupid. At least we can count on 10 fingers that such a conspiracy designed by you (on nothing than your fantasy) may not be possible to realise. It would simply not work in practice ...

Lutz


OK, Lutz. Find me one other non-Amarna, non-Borchardt example of vertically cut shoulders supporting only a head and neck. Painted. With no paint erosion from the sand. And plaster over limestone.

Go find one.
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 11, 2012 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

khazarkhum wrote:
OK, Lutz. Find me one other non-Amarna, non-Borchardt example of vertically cut shoulders supporting only a head and neck. Painted. With no paint erosion from the sand. And plaster over limestone.

Go find one.

Why should I? Believers and conspiracy theorists are not to convince by an argument ... You prove to me that here too well.

You're obviously not even accept that this bust was not made for the offical state cult (even this has been said several times from different members here). It was a sculptor model, nothing more. And so it was reduced to the limits it was made for.

Lutz
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