The Roman Archaeology Blog is concerned with news reports featuring Roman period archaeology. If you wish to see news reports for general European archaeology, please go to The Archaeology of Europe Weblog.
Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Turkey: Investigation over 'ruined' Roman mosaics
Turkey's culture ministry is investigating reports that a number of valuable Roman mosaics were badly damaged during botched restoration work at an archaeological museum, according to Turkish media.
Authorities are looking into the claims of a local craftsman who raised concerns over the condition of at least 10 mosaics at the Hatay Archaeology Museum, the Hurriyet Daily News website reports. Mehmet Daskapan first spoke out in an interview with a local paper in February, but the news was only picked up by mainstream Turkish media on Monday. "Valuable pieces from the Roman period have been ruined," Mr Daskapan told the Antakya Gazetesi website at the time. "They have become caricatures of their former selves. Some are in an especially poor condition and have lost their originality and value."
Before and after photos of the mosaics presented by Mr Daskapan show the "restored" versions looking significantly different to the originals. Some stones appear to have been replaced with different colours and shapes, changing the facial expressions of the characters depicted. A report on the Radikal website has suggested the images could have been Photoshopped, but the site later noted that the region's governor had nonetheless closed off the section housing the mosaics in question.