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Museum: Here's Your $4M Coffin. Sorry About That

New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art returns the antiquity to Egypt
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 16, 2019 1:30 PM CST
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is returning this $4 million coffin to Egypt.   (Metropolitan Museum of Art)

(Newser) – New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art says it's returning a prized artifact to Egypt after learning it was stolen from the country in 2011, the AP reports. The Met said Friday that the Manhattan District Attorney's office found evidence that the museum was given a false ownership history for the gilded Coffin of Nedjemankh. The Met bought the piece from a Paris art dealer in 2017 for nearly $4 million and displayed it until this week. Nedjemankh was a high-ranking first century BC priest.

Investigators say the Met was given fraudulent documents, including a forged 1971 Egyptian export license. Met president Daniel Weiss apologized to Egypt. He said the museum was a fraud victim and unwitting participant in the illegal trade of antiquities. The Met says it's cooperating with the DA's investigation and revising its acquisitions process. The Met's CEO and president, Daniel Weiss, apologized to Egypt's minister of antiquities and said the museum wants to learn how to avoid making this kind of mistake again, the New York Times reports.

(Read more Egypt stories.)

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