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Published: Thursday, 6/21/2012 - Updated: 3 years ago

Order: Antique will be returned to Italy


A consent order filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court, Toledo, confirms that a rare 2,500-year-old kalpis (water jug) will be relinquished by the Toledo Museum of Art and returned to Italy, from where it was looted.

Made of clay, the vessel was illegally excavated, smuggled out of Italy, and shipped to the museum with forged documents.

The museum bought it in 1982 for $90,000. The court filing stated the kalpis is valued at more than $665,000, according to the Italian government.

The museum insured it for $300,000 in 2001 when it was loaned to an exhibit in Venice, the last time the museum estimated its value. Prices on Italian antiquities have risen because so many have been returned to Italy because of crackdowns on dealers trading in ill-gotten gains.

The kalpis will be displayed in the museum's Libbey Court until its return later this year.

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