The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles: Return or Remain?

The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles

The National Hellenic Museum brings Chicago’s top attorneys to face off on March 16 at The Art Institute, in The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles. Return or remain? You decide!


Trial 2017: The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles

Following the extraordinary success of The Trials of Socrates, Orestes, and Antigone, the National Hellenic Museum is pleased to present the next in the series, The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles.  Coming up on March 16, Chicago’s top legal minds will deliberate one of the most highly anticipated international cases.

The National Hellenic Museum will conduct this latest Trial at the Rubloff Auditorium and The Art Institute. There, in a court filled with nationally renowned judges and attorneys, The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles will decide whether these classical Greek marble sculptures should return to Greece or remain in the British Museum.


The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles will take place at the Art Institute’s Rubloff Auditorium on March 16.


About the Parthenon Marbles

The Parthenon Marbles, also known as the Elgin Marbles, originally formed much of the exterior decoration of the Parthenon. In the early 1800s, the Ottoman governor of Greece allegedly permitted Lord Elgin to ship them to England. They have been on display at the British Museum for nearly 200 years. Since obtaining independence from the Ottoman Empire, Greece has pressed the United Kingdom for the Marbles’ return, a request that has been refused on the grounds that ownership was properly acquired.


Presiding judges

Presiding over the proceedings will be Judges Richard A. Posner and William J. Bauer from the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, Illinois Supreme Court Justice Anne M. Burke, US District Judge Charles P. Kocoras, and Cook County Circuit Judge Anna H. Demacopoulos.



Greece, looking to regain control of the Parthenon Marbles, will be represented by Daniel K. Webb and Robert A. Clifford, who are expected to argue in court that Lord Elgin obtained the Parthenon Marbles without proper permission and thus lacked title.  Supporting their efforts will be Sam Adam, Jr., who will present an expert witness on behalf of Greece.  Mr. Adam will also cross examine the British expert.

The British will take issue with the Greek argument. Representing the United Kingdom and the British Museum, Patrick M. Collins and Patrick J. Fitzgerald, are expected to argue not only the validity of Lord Elgin’s possession of the Marbles, but the equity of British Museum’s continued ownership insofar is it came into possession of the Marbles in good faith. Tinos Diamantatos will present an expert witness on behalf of the British side and will cross examine the Greek expert.


Expert witnesses

New to this year’s trial is the testimony and cross examination of expert witnesses. Dueling experts will explore who owns Parthenon Marbles. Dr. Fiona Rose-Greenland, a University of Chicago scholar and expert on antiquities represents the Greek government in its efforts to reclaim the Parthenon Marbles. Molly Morse Limmer, an art consultant and former Christie’s vice president, will explain why the Marbles should remain at the British Museum.


Return or remain? You decide

Cast your vote for whether the Marbles should return or remain at The Trial of the Parthenon Marbles on March 16 at The Art Institute – Rubloff Auditorium, 230 S Columbus Dr., Chicago, IL 60603. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. and the trial begins at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets are $100 per person and are available for purchase online, or call 312.655.1234, ext. 21, or purchase in person at the National Hellenic Museum’s gift shop.


WindyCity Greek is a media sponsor for the Trial of the Parthenon Marbles


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