In 2012, the Minister of Science and Culture of Armenia took the initiative of returning the fragments of the statue of Armenian pagan goddess Anahit to Armenia.
An annual holiday Navasard (New Year) in honor of Anahit has been an important event, which was accompanied by songs, dances, and music. Sick have been attending temples to ask for healing.
Anahit has always been highly appreciated by even Christian Armenians. According to Armenian historian Agathangelos, the first Christian king Trdat considered Anahit the mother and pride of Armenia, along with noble and great Aramazd.
Currently, the fragments of Anahit’s bronze statue are kept in the British Museum. According to their website, the fragments were accidentally discovered by a farmer in Satala, Turkey (Armenian Highlands) in 1872. The head was sent through Constantinople to Italy to Alessandro Castellani, who then sold it to the British Museum. Several years later, hand fragment was also transferred to the museum.
Being a significant relic in Armenian culture and religion, the statue should be brought back to its homeland. The widespread deportation and disorder in historical Armenia promoted the robbery of the Armenian nation. The physical presence of the fragments will allow the Armenians to see them in their museums and galleries without the need to travel for more than 2000 miles.
The sentimental value of the statue of Anahit is much higher for Armenians than for casual tourists and guests of the British Museum. The importance of Anahit is evidenced by festivals, images of Anahit on modern Armenian banknotes, post stamps, books, pictures, logos, and much more.
Greece and Egypt had a similar experience. In particular, Egypt has repeatedly managed to return cultural values from the British Museum. The Armenians can do the same!
In 2012, a petition on the return of the fragments of Anahit’s bronze statue was created. Alas, due to the insufficient number of signatures, the initiative failed, which is rather strange. Additionally, there has been an active Facebook page until 2014.
Will the Armenians manage to return the fragments with such an approach? Probably not!
Lets Bring The Goddess Home