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British Museum's findings on the Parthenon marbles cleaning incident said to lack key details

The publication is interpreted by William St Clair to be the result of efforts to protect the institution's reputation

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The British Museum (BM) has published a report on the controversial 1999 conference on the cleaning of the Parthenon Marbles. This comprises an important paper by curator Ian Jenkins, along with internal museum documentation and photographic evidence, and presents a frank account of the 1937-38 cleaning. But the book does not, as originally promised, include the contributions of the Greek specialists who addressed the conference or UK critic William St Clair. Three of the Greek papers, by Dr Kalliope Kouzeli, Evi Papaconstantinou and Alexander Mantis, are available on the BM’s website, but without illustrations (www.thebritishmuseum.ac.uk/greekandroman/parthenon). Those of Dr Ismini Trianti, Professor Theodore Skoulikidis, Amerimni Galanos and Yianna Doganis are not on the web. Also missing is the contribution of St Clair, who precipitated the debate with his detailed critique of the cleaning. A BM spokesman said that “most of the Greek scholars did not submit their updated papers in time for publication and St Clair had chosen to publish his paper immediately before the conference in the International Journal of Cultural Property.” St Clair accuses the BM of an “institutional cover-up”, and says that the updated version of his conference paper is considerably different from his earlier article. He now intends to contact the Greek scholars, with a view to producing a separate volume. Cleaning and controversy: The Parthenon Sculptures 1811-1939 by Ian Jenkins is published by BM (ISBN 0 86159 146 1), £25

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