Our Fake History

Episode #156- What Became of the Benin Bronzes? (Part III)

In the last year the global conversation around the fate of the Benin Bronzes has shifted dramatically. In April of 2021 the German government announced that the vast majority of Benin Bronzes kept in German museums will be returned to Nigeria. This announcement was followed by a rash of other institutions making pledges to return objects that had been plundered from the Kingdom of Benin. Most recently, in March of 2022, America's Smithsonian institute pledged to return it's entire collection of Benin Bronzes. However, the one institution that has yet to commit to returning it's plundered artefacts is the British Museum, which holds the world's largest collection of Benin Bronzes. This is especially painful given Britain's role in the destruction of the Kingdom of Benin. How exactly did the the death of one British official result in the destruction of a 1000 year old city and the wholesale looting of Benin's heritage? Tune-in and find out how Maxim guns, turn of the century rockets, and one magical warrior all play a role in the story.


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