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Tags: Italy | Angels Returned

France Returns Marble Angels Stolen from Italy Church in '89

Tuesday, 19 October 2021 12:00 PM

ROME (AP) — A British art collector who bought a pair of 17th-century marble angels from a Neapolitan antiques shop two decades ago has returned the winged “putti” to Italy’s art police after learning that they had been stolen from a church.

Italy’s carabinieri art police said the unnamed collector had tried to resell the angels at an antiques shop in Avignon, France, before his planned move from France to Portugal when French art police flagged them as possible stolen goods.

Italy’s art police said Tuesday that the angels, decorated with strategically placed vine of leaves and fruit, had been stolen from the St. Sebastian church in Guardia Sanframondi, northeast of Naples, on Dec. 13, 1989. Police said the collector was ignorant of the angels’ origin and offered to return them without any legal fight.

They were formally handed over Tuesday to Italy at a ceremony at the French Embassy.

In a statement, the carabinieri noted that churches in the area had been subjected to numerous thefts after the 1980 Irpinia earthquake leveled huge swaths of southern Italy.

The police noted that another set of angels, similarly reported as stolen in the carabineri’s database, was recently returned to another Guardia Sanframondi church after they were located in a Milan antiques shop and recognized by the church pastor.

© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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A British art collector who bought a pair of 17th-century marble angels from a Neapolitan antiques shop two decades ago has returned the winged "putti" to Italy's art police after learning that they had been stolen from a church.Italy's carabinieri art police said the...
Italy,Angels Returned
216
2021-00-19
Tuesday, 19 October 2021 12:00 PM
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