Polish treasure from 4th century BC transferred to National Museum

Polish Minister of Culture and National Heritage Piotr Gliński announced on Monday that a red-figure lekythos dating back to the fourth century BC had officially been returned to the National Museum in Warsaw.

As the minister announced, the lekythos is the first archeological object Poland has retrieved due to national war losses being found.

"The lekythos comes from the collection of (Józef - PAP) Choynowski, who in the 19th century was one of the biggest collectors and owners of archaeological artefacts," Gliński explained.

The minister pointed out that the "history of this object and the Choynowski collection is fascinating," adding that "Chojnowski was a collector who lived in the Kiev region (of Ukraine - PAP), but in 1901 decided to bring his entire collection, over 4,000 objects, to Warsaw (...)

"In 1923 (...) the collection was transferred to the national Museum in Warsaw (...) during the war, as happened with many works of art, it was plundered and exported to Germany (...)," Gliński observed.

As the minister explained, some of these items have been returned to the National Museum. Nevertheless, at least 60 of them are listed in a database of lost works. "Today, part of the collection, a small one, but a very symbolic and valuable one, comes back to the National Museum," Gliński concluded.