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Bassae’s missing metopes

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Many of the Bassae temple’s stunning metopes, the marble frieze sculptures, as well as other fine pieces, were removed and installed in London’s British Museum in 1814–15. Reportedly, an English archeologist bribed the local Ottoman pasha, who evidently did not consider preservation of the works of any importance. The metopes powerfully depict the battles of the Amazons, Lapiths and Centaurs, and they are on display in a special room with the controversial Elgin Marbles, which, under similar circumstances, were boxed up and shipped to Britain in 1812.

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