‘Unique Iberian urn is fake’ claim

FAKED? Experts divided over Iberian find

UNEXPECTED silence surrounds an Iberian pottery urn hailed as “unique” in January. It was discovered in the backroom of a Campello antiques shop by the Guardia Civil during a routine check and is now locked away at MARQ, Alicante city’s archaeology museum.

Around 2,300 years old and depicting hunting scenes it is “matchless,” declared Jose Luis Simon Garcia from the regional government’s Culture department.

Not everyone agreed, including Carmen Aranegui, professor of archaeology at Valencia University. Other experts had reservations but only she was prepared to speak out, then or now.

It is a classic “cut and paste” job, she believes. Much of its decorations has been copied from genuine finds and it closely resembles other “restored” Iberian forgeries currently fetching €30,000 on the international market.

The joins where the pottery shards are joined show suspiciously little erosion, Aranegui added.

The find is under investigation by an Alicante court and cannot be discussed as it is sub judice, saidthe regional Culture department last week.

The last word went to another expert who requested anonymity.  “If the urn turns out to be fake, it won’t matter. We all make mistakes and it wouldn’t be the first time this has happened.” 

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