Three members of the US Congress introduced on Tuesday — one day after Greek Independence Day — a resolution calling on Britain to return the Parthenon Marbles to Greece, their nation of origin.
The resolution was introduced by Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12), Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues, Congressman Gus Bilirakis (FL-12), Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Hellenic Issues, and Congressman Donald Payne, Jr. (NJ-10).
“The Parthenon Marbles belong in Greece, with the Greek people,” declared Rep. Maloney.
“The marbles are some the country’s greatest examples of artistic expression and beauty, and are vital pieces of Greek history. The people of Greece and those who visit from all around the world to see the magnificence of the Acropolis should be able to enjoy the Marbles in their rightful home. This resolution calls upon Great Britain to finally return these treasures.” Representative Maloney noted.
“Art provides a window into history, and is the ultimate freedom of expression,” stated Florida Representative Bilirakis.
He continued, saying, “The Parthenon Marbles were made by the citizens of Athens under the direction of renowned artist Phidias to celebrate the pride and majesty of the city of Athens.
“To not house and view these citizen contributions in the city they were originally intended does a disservice not only to the people of Athens, but also to the civilization that paved the path for modern democracy and freedom.
“I sincerely hope to see these original works and other important elements of Hellenic history finally returned to their rightful owners for future generations of proud Greeks to enjoy,” Representative Bilirakis concluded.
“The Parthenon Marbles tell a story of celebration for ancient Greece, and the marbles are important to Greek culture,” said New Jersey Representative Payne. “To best serve history, and to ensure the world can enjoy ancient history in its proper context, the Parthenon Marbles should be returned to Greece.”