Immortality is a messy business. If you don’t believe it, ask Ramadan Badry Hussein, the man keeping track of thousands of monuments in Egypt. Only five years ago, cleaning men stole three ancient statues from the basement of the Egyptian Museum. When quizzed by the police, they said that the statues were just lying around unattended. They bundled them up with some construction debris they were removing from the building and walked out. Their deception went unnoticed for days. The basement housed more than 100,000 artefacts, and hadn’t been properly catalogued for decades. The thieves were caught this time, but others may have got away with an ancient treasure or more. When mummies and furniture, statues and votive offerings are stacked in boxes and deposited in dusty corners, anything can happen.
Monday, September 13, 2010
The National (Nabil Shawkat)