Posts tagged ‘Mosul Museum’

December 10, 2015

Schlagzeile geht schneller als Recherche – über die journalistische Arbeit zum Antikenraub [Headlines move faster than research – on journalistic work on antiquities looting]

Esther Saoub and Amir Musawy have published a clear, helpful (German-language) article about Abu Sayyaf’s antiquities stash and how headlines move faster than research – on journalistic work on antiquities looting [Schlagzeile geht schneller als Recherche – über die journalistische Arbeit zum Antikenraub].

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July 17, 2015

Reassessing the balance of antiquities and forgeries in Abu Sayyaf’s stash

Someone kindly prompted me to reconsider the balance of antiquities and fakes in Abu Sayyaf’s stash and I thought it might be worth trying to count some of the sets of objects on display. I didn’t want to do it before, because I don’t trust my eye for this material, but the fakes here appear to be so poor that they largely distinguish themselves.

I fear that unguided journalists’ professional effort to capture the variety of objects may have incidentally foregrounded the fakes, of which there is a far greater variety than there is of coins and beads. And archaeologists and criminologists (myself included), then, focused on the outliers instead of the the overwhelming majority of objects. It appears that most of Abu Sayyaf’s illicit antiquities were ancient coins.

[I’m working on a huge update based on the U.S. State Department Cultural Heritage Center’s summary and photo gallery of the ISIL leader’s loot.]

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July 16, 2015

Why don’t dealers in London keep records as detailed as traffickers in Deir ez-Zor?

Thanks to Esther Saoub and Paul Barford amongst others, there have been many updates to the ‘first material proof‘ that Islamic State is trafficking antiquities.

In a further follow-up, I’ve reassessed the balance of antiquities and forgeries. I believe that most of Abu Sayyaf’s stash comprised ancient coins. [I’m working on a huge update based on the U.S. State Department Cultural Heritage Center’s summary and photo gallery of the ISIL leader’s loot.]

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July 15, 2015

the ‘first material proof’ that Islamic State is trafficking antiquities

As Iraqia TV correspondent Amir Musawy scooped and SWR reporter Esther Saoub @esaoub translated, the United States has given ‘#antiquities to #Iraq, that [were] seized with #ISIS commander Abu Sayyaf in #Syria’; it is the ‘first material proof that #ISIS is engaged in #antiquity trade’. And it demonstrates several features of the trade all at once.

There have been a lot of updates, which are here, but I consider whether this was Abu Sayyaf’s stash and where it might have been assembled more fully (or more coherently) in an update-summarising follow-up post.

In a further follow-up, I’ve reassessed the balance of antiquities and forgeries. I believe that most of Abu Sayyaf’s stash comprised ancient coins.

[I’m working on a huge update based on the U.S. State Department Cultural Heritage Center’s summary and photo gallery of the ISIL leader’s loot.]

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February 28, 2015

Unevidenced and seemingly (hopefully) impossible claim that IS burned alive those who refused to wreck Mosul museums

I’ve continued to update my original post on Islamic State’s attack on Mosul Museum and the Nergal Gate Museum at Nineveh and am working on more, but there is one report that I want to address straight away on its own: “IS burns 4 members in Mosul for refusing to destroy museum”.

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June 24, 2014

There is no evidence that the Assyrian winged bull or Mosul/Nineveh Museum’s other artefacts have been destroyed

[This post was accurate at the time, but is sadly out of date. Islamic State has toppled, sledgehammered and jackhammered (drilled out) artefacts in Mosul Museum and at Nineveh.]

24 News (@24news__) reported in Arabic, ‘Iraq: “Daash” gunmen seize Nineveh Museum, and they destroyed ancient masterpieces, including the rare Assyrian winged bull [العراق : مسلحو “داعش” يستولون على متحف نينوى ويقومون بتكسير التحف منها تحفة الثور الاشوري المجنح النادرة]’. Coptic Nationalism (@DioscorusBoles) repeated the news in English, ‘ISIS destroys archaeological monuments at Mosul (Nineveh) Museum, including the famous winged Assyrian bull’ (and others copied-and-pasted or modified it).

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