UCL News


Joint statement from UCL and the Schøyen Collection: Aramaic Incantation Bowls

27 June 2007

Over the period 1995-1996, UCL accepted custody of an important collection of Aramaic incantation bowls from the Schøyen Collection for the purposes of carrying out research.

In 2003 questions were raised in the media with regard to the origin of these bowls, as a result of which UCL, with the agreement of the Schøyen Collection, initiated an inquiry into their provenance.

Following a searching investigation by an eminent panel of experts, and further enquiries of its own, UCL is pleased to announce that no claims adverse to the Schøyen Collection's right and title have been made or intimated.

Having made all the enquiries that it reasonably could, UCL has no basis for concluding that title is vested other than in the Schøyen Collection. UCL has now returned the bowls to the Schøyen Collection and has agreed to pay a sum in respect of its possession of them.

The investigations it has carried out have provided valuable lessons which will greatly assist UCL in developing new guidelines for its stewardship of cultural objects.