A replica of the famous monumental statues – or Moai – Easter Island on display in the British Museum in London will arrive on Tuesday in Chile to that of the sculptors of the island produce a copy in the basalt that could be exchanged for the original. The population of the island would like to offer this copy in local stone at the British Museum in order to convince him to restore the original statue, taken to the United Kingdom in 1868 by Richard Powell, who had offered to the Queen Victoria. She had then been given to the london museum.
“It must be the mégalithe original, because in him lives the spirit of our ancestors. For some it is a simple stone or a carving of archaeological value, but for us, it has an important spiritual meaning and energy”, said Saturday in a press release Camilo Mapu, the president of the community of the island.
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representatives of the local community and the chilean government went in November to London to propose an exchange between the copy and the original of the giant statue. The two parties agreed to explore the track of a loan from the British Museum in the long term, or even permanently, of the statue to the community of Easter island, but no definitive agreement has not yet been concluded.
The original sculpture of 2.42 metres high and weighs 4 tons, has been carved in basalt stone. The back of the statue are inscriptions that describe the worship of the man-bird and other aspects of the rituals of the past, enigmatic island. It is estimated that this mégalithe would have been carved between 1000 and 1600 a.d.
A copy of stone
The replica in foam and fiber has recently been carried out in the United States in the framework of an agreement concluded between the community of Easter Island and the Museum Bernice Pauahi Bishop, the museum of natural and cultural history of the State of Hawaii, which also advocates for the return of the original statue. Once in Chile, the reply will be quickly sent to Easter Island, located 3700 km to the east of the coast of chile, to be reproduced in stone.
In march, representatives of the Norwegian museum Kon-Tiki of Oslo and the ministry of chilean Culture have signed an agreement which confirms the return of thousands of archaeological pieces of the island washed away half of the Twentieth century by the famous explorer Thor Heyerdahl.
● The mysteries of Easter Island