A blog commenting on various aspects of the private collecting and trade in archaeological artefacts today and their effect on the archaeological record. Nothing to do with eBay my friend you can get sued for slandering people's information on here digest you keep your comments to your self. Somebody called Mr Wicks from Hailsham is an eBay trader his name and address are published on the sales offers of the two dealers I mention so I do not know what "slandering people's information" is meant to mean, if I am merely reporting for my readers' benefit what is in the public domain. The four men are named in court documents released to the press. They are innocent unless found guilty.
Note the RIP. Laurence in Cowley, this is a vital issue. Chope The hon. All items which are claimed objedts Treasure Trove are allocated specifically to museums within Scotland and the finder receives a reward. I broadly welcome the Bill, although there are problems of definition, which we have covered in a most amusing fashion. On amendment No. Member for Uxbridge.
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But, really, who knows? The senators' constituents include key players in the global Cases britain finding tainted archaeological objects trade, because New York City is one of its capitals, along with London, Munich and Switzerland. The last of these, the Younger Dryasended around 11, years ago, and since then Britain has been continuously occupied. There was ritual deposition of offerings in the wetlands and in holes in the ground. The four men are named in court documents released to the press. Stone rows are to be seen on, for example, Dartmoor. Possibly the most famous archaeological site of them all, in fact we'd be surprised if you managed to find a person who hadn't heard of Pompeii. Oxford University Press. I think it is going to be a show trial 'pour encourager les autres'. Fakes created or planted by archaeologists. Again they were mostly stone but this time some of them were incised shell with crazy little faces. InMunro went in Swedish lesbians kissing the kill. Archaeological evidence demonstrates that ancient Britons were involved in extensive maritime trade and cultural links with the rest of Europe from the Neolithic onwards, especially by exporting tin that was in abundant supply.
I beg to move amendment No.
- The national and international antiquities laws that looters and smugglers including Schultz violate have largely developed during this century.
- The best archaeological discoveries are those which challenge our ideas of human history, reveal new secrets all together, and above all capture the imagination.
- We tend to think of fake antiquities as being a problem created by the illicit trade in cultural objects.
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- A blog commenting on various aspects of the private collecting and trade in archaeological artefacts today and their effect on the archaeological record.
We tend to think of fake antiquities as being a problem created by the illicit trade in cultural objects. It is very true, this is how most fakes creep into the record. Yet, there is an interesting and much rarer form of faking: archaeological fraud. Fakes created or planted by archaeologists.
Dumbuck crannock , on the Firth of Clyde near Dumbarton Rock, is a layered platform with associated dock that was built sometime between BC and AD. The boat is real. The artefacts found within it, well, that is another story. The site was discovered by artist and archaeology enthusiast William A. Donnelly as he walked along the Clyde foreshore specifically looking for archaeological sites.
Donnelly, as a member of the Helensburgh Society, had participated in a number of archaeological excavations and his drawings of these are pretty spectacular. There excavators found a series of small finds that could only be described as unusual: arrow-shaped slates with incised lines and rock slabs with holes. Nothing like them were known from other ancient Scottish sites. All three men were involved with Dumbowie as well. During the excavation of the boat quite a few small finds were recovered.
They were exactly like the Dumbowie finds and were excavated on different days by different people. Again they were mostly stone but this time some of them were incised shell with crazy little faces.
Other Scottish archaeologists were not so impressed. Lines were drawn over the Dumbuck finds. The prominent archaeologist Dr Robert Munro was the lead voice in dismissing the odd carvings as modern fakes. He and the Helensburgh society co-directors got into quite a public fight in the letters pages of the Glasgow Herald through but eventually the controversy died down for a few years.
Yet in and excavations at another crannog, Langbank , produced a few more of the dubious objects. John Bruce led these excavations under the auspices of the Glasgow Archaeological Society and he had gone to great lengths to produce signed statements that all excavators on this project were not involved in Dumbuck or Dumbowie. Yet it seems like his assurances only relate to the seasons, and the questionable pieces may have been excavated in More letters were written to the papers.
In , Munro went in for the kill. Donnelly died shortly after this book came out and his son blamed this early death on stress caused by the controversy. The two also spend a bit of time trying to figure out who planted the pieces. The co-directors seem an obvious choice. They eliminate Miller as he died before excavation at Langbank commenced. They speculate that Bruce is unlikely due to his prominent role in later Scottish archaeology and thus the respect of his peers.
They note that Donnelly was deeply distressed by the allegations to a degree perhaps not seen in someone who had perpetrated the fraud. But, really, who knows?
It could have been one of them, all of them, or none of them. Whoever planted the pieces did so in a clever way and they were never really part of the canon of Scottish archaeological interpretation. Now they can just be enjoyed for what they are. Hale, Alex G. Munro, Robert Archaeology and False Antiquities. Shinichi Fujimura admitting to planting artefacts at his site. Shinichi Fujimura was not an archaeologist by training, rather he was an archaeology enthusiast who worked for a manufacturing firm and slowly moved himself into the legit archaeology world.
All of this went pretty well for Fujimura and he gained the support of a number of archaeologists who repeated his findings into the established academic literature.
But then the rumblings started. Furthermore, the artefacts themselves did not easily fit into the later sequence of artefacts. None of this made sense and, in the s, real archaeologists started saying that. Fujimura was still on it. At the Kamitakamori site near Tsukidate, Fujimura announced that his team had actually found potholes that he was dating to hundreds of thousands of years old. Proof of early Palaeolithic dwellings. The photos were taken the day before the k years news announcement.
Fujimura folded instantly. He said that he would take artefacts from his collection and personally deposit them in much older strata. Yet Fujimura continued to claim that his earlier finds were authentic. Then things turned very ugly.
A magazine published a series of articles in alleging other artefacts were fakes and implicating Mitsuo Kagawa, an archaeologist at Beppu University. In particular, the magazine focused on stone tools excavated in at Hijiridaki cave. The elderly Kagawa then committed suicide, leaving a note that maintained his innocence. His finds were removed from museums throughout Japan and everyone had quite a big rethink and a re-evaluation about what evidence they really had.
Other archaeologists associated with Fujimura found their lives to be ruined; quality archaeology so near to tainted archaeology becomes tainted as well. Athena Review. This one is a recent but classic case of what may have been funding and pressure.
Eliseo Gil and Idoia Filloy began excavations there in In they started major excavations to re-explore previously excavated parts of the city. And notable finds there were.
In June Eliseo Gil, the director of the archaeological project made a spectacular announcement: in and the project had uncovered hundreds of pottery sherds and some animal bones bearing astounding 3rd century graffiti. Next they announced that they had found sherds with Egyptian themes and Egyptian hieroglyphs on them which tied the Basque region to this appealing super power.
And not just any Egyptian themes, some of the sherds bore the name of the famous Queen Nefertiti. Finally the project announced that they had found the oldest depiction of the crucifixion of Jesus, which fits in with a Basque self-image of devotion.
Early scientific analysis of the objects looked promising. Yet, of course, there were questions. At least one Latin inscription reportedly had a comma. Within days of the announcement various scholars started officially voicing their doubts about the finds. In May a new government took over in the province and the head of the culture department of this government decided to investigate this matter.
A panel of 26 experts was assembled. They mulled over the evidence for a year, announced that they detected massive fraud. And gosh were they ever fakes. The famous crucifixion scene had RIP written on the cross. The list goes on…and on…and on. The commission cost the public tens of thousands of euro. The regional government charged Gil with attack on national heritage and fraud. The public train company that funded the dig filed a separate lawsuit seeking the return of much of the funding they provided.
This case has, characteristically, dragged on and on. Elkin, Mike The Veleia Affair. Archaeology 62 5. El Mundo. Toggle navigation. Posted on 2 October Post. A look at archaeological fraud. Location of Kamitakamori. Fujimura planting artefacts at Kamitakamori. The famous crucifixion sherd. Note the RIP.
Reconstructing this ancient environment has provided clues to the route first visitors took to arrive at what was then a peninsula of the Eurasian continent. The Bronze Age people lived in round houses and divided up the landscape. Bibcode : Sci London: William Collins. The aim of the PAS is to make as much of the information available as possible, while protecting people's personal details and protecting archaeological sites from damage. Molecular Biology and Evolution.
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Advice for people buying archaeological objects from the UK
With the exception of Treasure finds see below all archaeological finds found in England , Wales or Northern Ireland are normally the property of the landowner. If the object has been recently discovered and the person selling the object is the finder, then they will need to have the permission of the landowner on whose land the object was found before they can sell it.
In Scotland there is a legal obligation to report all archaeological objects under Treasure Trove see below. All objects belong to the Crown, unless disclaimed. If the person selling the object is not the finder or landowner, then can you satisfy yourself that they have legal title to sell? It is a good idea to ask the seller to sign a statement verifying their account of the item's provenance and their legal title to sell.
Ask for a copy of all appropriate documentation if there was a legal obligation to report the find. There is a legal obligation to report archaeological finds found in England , Wales or Northern Ireland that qualify as Treasure see further information, below. Non-Treasure finds found in England or Wales may have been recorded with the Portable Antiquities Scheme a voluntary scheme to record archaeological objects found by the public - see contacts and therefore documentation may exist to show where an object was reported as being found and whether it has been properly recorded.
There has been a legal obligation to report the discovery of all archaeological objects found in Northern Ireland since restated in the Historic Monuments and Archaeological Objects Northern Ireland Order It is also an offence to excavate any land while searching for archaeological objects without a licence, which requires appropriate reporting of all archaeological findings.
Northern Ireland finds should not be purchased without appropriate documentation proving that they have been reported. There is a legal obligation to report all archaeological finds found in Scotland under Treasure Trove.
Scottish finds should not be purchased without documentation proving that they have been disclaimed see below. If the object was found outside the UK then you need to know whether it has been imported legally. Ask for documentation to prove this. Most countries have very tough export laws and will not allow archaeological material to be exported.
All UK archaeological objects found in the ground and at least 50 years old need an Export Licence before they can be sent overseas. If you live abroad and wish to buy an object found in the UK ask for a copy of the Export Licence. For further information contact the Export Licensing Team see contacts. For finds found in England or Wales it is important to know when the object was found. All finds of gold or silver found before 24 September should have been reported as Treasure Trove.
All Treasure finds see further information found after that date should have been reported under the Treasure Act In Scotland there is a legal obligation to report all archaeological finds, no matter when they were found. Likewise in Northern Ireland there is the legal requirement to report all archaeological finds found after In England and Wales there is a legal obligation to report Treasure finds: under Treasure Trove if found before 24 September or under the Treasure Act if found after that date see further information.
Only Treasure finds that have been disclaimed on behalf of the Crown can be legally sold, so ask to see proof that the find was disclaimed i. Most gold and silver objects and some other classes of finds found in England and Wales should have been reported Treasure, even if the seller says they 'come from an old collection'! If there is any doubt whether an object has been reported Treasure or not then it is best to contact the Treasure Section at the British Museum for English finds or the National Museum of Wales for Welsh finds see contacts.
In Scotland there is a legal obligation to report all archaeological finds Treasure Trove see further information. Only disclaimed finds can be legally acquired. When buying archaeological material you should ask to see the appropriate disclaimer certificate. For further information and advice contact the Treasure Trove Secretariat at the National Museums of Scotland see contacts.
In Northern Ireland there is a legal obligation to report the discovery of all archaeological finds and these should not be purchased without proof that the discovery has been reported. For further information and advice contact the Environment and Heritage Service , Northern Ireland see contacts. In Northern Ireland it is illegal even to be in possession of a metal-detector on a scheduled or State Care site without permission. You should not buy finds removed from such sites!
In England and Wales the Portable Antiquities Scheme is a voluntary scheme to record archaeological objects found by the public. Whilst therefore there is no legal obligation to record finds with the Scheme, finders who do so are adding to our understanding of the past.
It is current UK Government advice that finders of all archaeological objects found in England and Wales should have them reported and recorded. Contact your local Finds Liaison Officer for more information see contacts. In Scotland there is a legal obligation to report all finds of archaeological objects under Treasure Trove.
Finds may be recorded, even if they are disclaimed. Under arrangements established in finders of Treasure who acted properly and lawfully by reporting their finds and handing over anything they had found to their local Coroner received a reward based on the market value of the find if any items were retained by a museum. Otherwise the finds were disclaimed and returned to the finder. In Scotland all newly discovered archaeological objects, whether they are precious metal or not and regardless of whether they were hidden or lost, belong to the Crown under the legal principle of bona vacantia.
All items which are claimed under Treasure Trove are allocated specifically to museums within Scotland and the finder receives a reward. Otherwise finds are disclaimed and returned to the finder.
Under the Act, extended by the Treasure Designation Order , the following finds are Treasure, if found after 24 September or, in the case of category 2, if found after 1 January :. Treasure Act There is a legal obligation for all finders of Treasure to report these to a coroner within 14 days of making the find, or realising the find was Treasure. Dealing in Cultural Object Offences Act It is illegal to knowingly sell, buy or deal in tainted cultural objects objects of historical, architectural or archaeological interest illegally excavated or removed after 30 December Tel: Log in Register.
Reporting Treasure What is Treasure? Where was the object found? When was the object found? Was there a legal obligation to report the find? Has the object been recorded? ASK - have you legal title to sell? ASK - where was the object found? ASK - when was the object found? ASK - was there a legal obligation to report the find? ASK - has the object been recorded?
Under the Act, extended by the Treasure Designation Order , the following finds are Treasure, if found after 24 September or, in the case of category 2, if found after 1 January : Any metallic object, other than a coin, provided that at least 10 per cent by weight of metal is precious metal that is, gold or silver and that it is at least years old when found. If the object is of prehistoric date it will be Treasure provided any part of it is precious metal. Any group of two or more metallic objects of any composition of prehistoric date that come from the same find see below Two or more coins from the same find provided they are at least years old when found and are composed of at least 10 per cent gold or silver but if the coins contain less than 10 per cent of gold or silver there must be at least ten of them.
Only the following groups of coins will normally be regarded as coming from the same find: a hoards that have been deliberately hidden, b smaller groups of coins, such as the contents of purses, that may been dropped or lost, and c votive or ritual deposits.
Any object, whatever it is made of, that is found in the same place as, or had previously been together with, another object that is Treasure. Any object that would previously have been Treasure Trove, but does not fall within the specific categories given above. Only objects that are less than years old, that are made substantially of gold or silver, that have been deliberately hidden with the intention of recovery and whose owners or heirs are unknown will come into this category.
Note: An object or coin is part of the 'same find' as another object or coin if it is found in the same place as, or had previously been together with, the other object. Finds may have become scattered since they were originally deposited in the ground. Law enforcement Treasure Act There is a legal obligation for all finders of Treasure to report these to a coroner within 14 days of making the find, or realising the find was Treasure. The Theft Act and Trespass may also be applicable.
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