More than a century of longing for the Sidamara Sarcophagus, which is considered to be one of the largest sarcophagi of the ancient world and weighing tons, has come to an end. The sarcophagus discovered 140 years ago in the ancient city of Sidamara in the Ambar Village of Karaman has found its missing piece, the Head of Eros.
As a result of the cooperation of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism with the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the piece brought to Turkey on June 10 was reunited with the historical artifact it belongs to.
Eros Head, which was transported from London to Turkey with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Turkish Airlines, was placed in a giant sarcophagus with a weight of more than 30 tons, with scientific studies carried out jointly by the expert restorers of the Istanbul Archaeological Museums and the Victoria & Albert Museum.
The columnar sarcophagus dating back to 250 BC in the Roman Period was opened to visitors in its original form at the Istanbul Archaeological Museum today.
The Troubled Journey of the Magnificent Work
It was understood that the Eros Head, one of the high reliefs separated from the sarcophagus, which was discovered by the British Military Consul General Charles Wilson in 1882 and was buried again because it could not be moved, was taken to London, the capital of England.
The sarcophagus, which was re-discovered by a villager in the ancient city of Sidamara in Karaman in 1898, was reported to the Museum-i Hümayun, which is now the Istanbul Archeology Museum.
The giant sarcophagus, which was decided to be moved to the museum in Istanbul as a result of Osman Hamdi Bey's investigations in the region, was taken to the center by buffaloes under the conditions of the time. The magnificent work, which made a grueling journey with the special arrangement of the train wagons, reached today's Istanbul Archeology Museum in 1901.
The Eros Head relief found in London was donated by Marion Olivia Wilson to the Victoria & Albert Museum in 1933 in memory of her father, Charles Wilson.
A plaster copy of the Head of Eros was placed in the giant sarcophagus in the Istanbul Archaeological Museums as a result of the negotiations with the Victoria & Albert Museum officials in the 1930s.
Ministry of Culture and Tourism and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in 2010 Dr. She conveyed to the Victoria & Albert Museum the research of Şehrazat Karagöz, which brought the subject back to the agenda, and the issue of exhibiting the Head of Eros together with the sarcophagus.
Director of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Victoria & Albert Museum, Dr. The cooperation of Tristram Hunt and his team aimed at the preservation of cultural assets and their approach to the preservation of cultural assets in situ enabled the Eros Head to be restored to its sarcophagus.
With the cooperation protocol signed between the Istanbul Archeology Museum and the Victoria & Albert Museum, the missing piece of the sarcophagus was brought to Turkey and placed in its place.