The Elgin Marbles: The Story of the Parthenon and Archaeology's Greatest Controversy

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9780091800130: The Elgin Marbles: The Story of the Parthenon and Archaeology's Greatest Controversy

Oxbow says: This book's author does not shy away from expressing her opinions on the destruction of ancient sites in Greece and her belief that the Elgin Marbles are best left in the care of the British Museum, or at least for the time being. The Elgin Marbles leads the reader through a combination of historical narrative and architectural and artistic description, to this point - the controversy over the Parthenon sculptures brought to London by Lord Elgin in the early 19th century. The main part of the book tells the story of the ancient acropolis in Athens both before and after the Golden Age of the city and the Periclean building programme which initiated and built its famous buildings and sculptures. This is all set within a historical survey of the period and Athens' subsequent, fluctuating fortunes under the Romans, under Christian rule, where it survived as a beacon of paganism, under Byzantine rule, during the Crusades, under the Ottomans, and the struggle for spoils from the ancient city, by the French, Turks, Venetians and English, in the early modern period. There follows a detailed account of the Elgin Marbles and their journey from Athens to London, set within an era of antiquarianism and tourism, their acquisition by the British Museum, the controversial cleaning of the 1930s, through to current political debates about their return to Greece. Some may not agree with King's staunch beliefs about the future fate of the Marbles, and perhaps the final chapter is a little self-indulgent in this regard, but with no agreement in sight the political, cultural and ethical debate rages on.

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From the Publisher:

A brilliant and controversial young archaeologist rekindles the drama of classical Greece for a new readership and traces the history of the Parthenon and the disputed Elgin Marbles.

About the Author:

Dorothy King's work has led to new theories on classical archaeology and her high-profile campaigns against the destruction of classical sites in Greece have made headlines. This is her first book.

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King, Dorothy
Published by Hutchinson (2006)
ISBN 10: 0091800137 ISBN 13: 9780091800130
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