Getting the national ministry for culture to agree to returns has not proved to be easy.

Getting the national ministry for culture to agree to returns has not proved to be easy.

06-11-2021MDB files

Costitx has for years been calling for ancient sculptures of bulls’ heads to be returned to Majorca by the National Archaeological Museum in Madrid.

The heads were discovered towards the end of the nineteenth century and sold to the museum, which has consistently turned down the requests made Costitx town hall and the Council of Mallorca.

Something similar to this has arisen in Campanet. A councillor, Pedro Pons, found out by chance that five pieces from the Massana caves were on display at the museum. He visited the museum, and there they were. He explains that everyone in Campanet knows that there were excavations at the caves and that there were several finds. But what no one seemed to know was that some of these finds were in the museum.

They come from the later period of the Talaiotic culture, the second half of the Iron Age between 500 and 100 BC. There is a percussion instrument, a small axe, two bracelets and a necklace with glass beads. Pons wants them to be returned. If the cost of keeping them would be too great for the town hall, he suggests that exact replicas could be made and put on display at the town hall building, while the Museum of Mallorca could house the originals.

When he saw the pieces at the museum, he immediately thought of the Costitx bulls. The museum might be thinking likewise. Getting the national ministry for culture to agree to returns has not proved to be easy.

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