A stolen marble piece from Ancient Olympia was returned from Germany

It was illegally taken to Germany in the 1930s


A fragment of a marble pipeline, which had been detached from the archaeological site of Ancient Olympia and illegally exported from Greece, was repatriated from Germany. The ancient object was delivered by a German citizen to the offices of the Greek Embassy in Berlin.

According to the information provided by the German who delivered it, the fragment was from Ancient Olympia, probably from the Stadium, and it was illegally taken to Germany in the 1930s.

From a first examination of the object, which was also informed by the Director of excavations in Olympia, Mr. R. Senff, this is probably a fragment of a marble water conduit measuring 0,32×0,18×0,075m.

In its middle there is a shallow groove, 0,057m wide, formed to facilitate the flow of water. There are indications that the fragment had been reused in the past.

Following the consultation with the Department of Documentation and Protection of Cultural Goods the fragment was flown from Berlin to Athens on 10 August 2017, accompanied by an Embassy employee and from there on the same day, at the Archaeological Museum of Olympia, where it is kept.

It should be noted that in the archaeological site of Ancient Olympia, a sophisticated pipeline network for the water supply and drainage of storm water, is still well preserved.


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