As officials of the Louvre in Paris seek to raise another one million euros to renovate the famed sculpture Winged Victory of Samothrace that was stolen off that Greek island by a Frenchman in the 19th Century, Greece has asked for its return.
“If the French and the Louvre have a problem, we are ready to preserve and accentuate the Victory of Samothrace, if they return it to us,” said Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Akis Gerondopoulos.
Talking to the Greek radio station SKAI, he stated that he speaks as a native of Evros. “Samothrace is an excellent island, the statue of Winged Victory was found there; its archaeological site and Museum exist, so we can showcase it as natives of the region,” he said.
He added that, “The archaeological service of the region is doing a very important work in Samothrace and everyday more and more of the region’s natural beauties are highlighted, especially its archaeological treasures. For us, Samothrace is a diamond in the region of Thrace,” he concluded.
With the Parthenon Marbles, friezes that were stolen from the Acropolis marvel nearly 200 years ago by a British diplomat, Lord Elgin, the Winged Victory is regarded as one of the world’s greatest treasures but the French and British said the masterpieces are not Greek anymore and that Greece has no claim to them.