Archaeology Magazine

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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Mexico Demands Sotheby’s Stop Sale

Thursday, March 21, 2013

MEXICO CITY, MEXICO—According to an announcement made by the National Institute of Anthropology and History, Sotheby’s plans to auction 130 pre-Columbian objects, most of which the government of Mexico says are fakes. “Of the 130 objects advertised as being from Mexico, 51 are archaeological artifacts that are (Mexican) national property, and the rest are handicrafts,” read the statement. Mexico has asked Sotheby’s to stop the sale and has asked the French government for assistance, but a Sotheby’s spokeswoman has said that the sale will go forward as planned. The sale, which is scheduled to take place in Paris, is of a collection started in Paris in 1920. The article states that Mexico has prohibited the export of archaeological artifacts since at least 1827.