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China looks for its looted treasures

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China looks for its looted treasures

China has increasingly been sending fine arts and archaeological teams across America to identify and hopefully recover Chinese artistic treasures, most recently items that may have been removed from the Old Summer Palace in Beijing. The palace housed extraordinary items until British and French troops plundered it in 1860. While they have apparently found little to claim from this palace on a recent trip to the US, the country is engaged in a growing campaign to recover items looted during its “century of humiliation” from 1842 –1945. This Chinese effort parallels recent similar ones by Egypt to recover major artefacts, and harks back to the Greek efforts to recover missing parts of the Elgin Marbles, removed by a British explorer-nobleman in the early 19th century and which are now in the British Museum. For more, read the New York Times

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