Panamanian Ceramics return from The Netherlands

The Smithsonian reports that 343 pre-Hispanic ceramics made by potters in Panama have been repatriated fromThe Netherlands. The ministry of culture reported the artifacts would be on display next year

The pottery will go on display at the Museo Antropológico Reina Torres de Araúz,  named in honor of a Panamanian anthropologist. The muesum has been closed for renovations since 2012, and a second renovation pushed the date back to 2023. 

“This is the largest repatriation of archaeological pieces in the history of Central America,” Erika Mouynes, Panama’s foreign minister, explained. There are bowls, plates, burial vessels and items from graves. 

It is beleived that the pieces are from the first millennium C.E.., from the provience of Coclé. Experts hypothesize they were found  Panama in the early 1900s. Then is it said that the items were bought by a Dutch busienssman in the 60’s and 70’s. 

Alex Geurds, an archaeologist at Leiden University, explained in an article with Hyperallergic, that when the businessman retired in 2017, he donated the historic artifacts to the National Museum of Ethnology in Leiden. It was shortly after this that, university archaeologists determined that they should offer the pieces to Panamanian officials. 

Read the full article in Simthsonian Magazine