Dating bronze artifacts
Senior curator at Swedish museum, Världskulturmuseet, Michael Barrett, told The Guardian the move is part of an effort from a “generation of curators” looking to “find ways towards reconciliation.” The museum has a small collection of Benin bronze artifacts which it will put up for repatriation.
However, there are concerns about the insurance cost and safety of the bronze plaques in Nigeria.
It has since launched an ambitious campaign to retrieve over 5,000 artifacts from museums in Europe and America.
China has appealed to Britain to return 23,000 artifacts taken from the country during its occupation while Greece is still demanding that the British Museum return its Elgin Marbles which was traded to the British during the Ottoman Empire.
The findings could help map how the region's inhabitants evolved over the course of tens of thousands of years.
Among the artifacts dated to the comparatively younger Iron and Bronze ages were, as one might guess, iron and bronze wares, but also pottery and millstones (round stones used for grinding up grain, the mortar and pestle of their day).
Archaeologists have recovered thousands of artifacts from a cave in Xinjiang (an autonomous region of northern China) including stone tools, bronze and iron artifacts and animal fossils.
Some date as far back as the Paleolithic Age, making them roughly 45,000 years old, according to the Institute of Archaeology at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Oba Ewuare II of Benin has urged to the British government to repatriate the bronze sculptures to the Benin Museum as it formed an important part of their history.
About one-third of the artifacts were stone tools, with another third comprising fossilized animal skeletons.
The species the researchers could identify from the fossilized remains included rabbits, sheep, donkeys, rhinoceroses, bears and birds.
The city was set on fire and hundreds of trinkets, bronze sculptures, and valuables were stolen and later handed to the British government.
Through trade and art dealership, these artifacts have mostly ended up in Germany and the United States.Some of the looted goods primed to be given back to Nigeria include a bronze cockerel called “Okukor,” which is currently housed at Cambridge University.