Saturday, June 20, 2009

Under the Parthenon

Add this to the list of reasons to vacation in Greece, right next to nude beaches, free-flowing booze, birthplace of democracy, and so on:

A new museum of glass and concrete opened today at the base of the Acropolis, under the gaze of the limestone and marble Parthenon. It contains 226,000 square feet of antiquities: the statues and sculptures and papyrus that constitute the legacy left by the Greek civilization.

Conspicuously absent are the Elgin Marbles that were spirited away by a pompous aristocrat/wannabe archaeologist to the British Museum. There they have remained, since the British have claimed Greece is too politically unstable and too economically ill-equipped to maintain the looted freezes and statues. The museum's curators hope the new $200 million facility will shoot holes in that argument for once and for all. Here's hoping the British Museum is willing to part with at least some of its pilfered treasures.

In the meantime, check out some beautiful photos of the new museum.
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