Italian antique desk displayed in New York's Met recovered

Published 24.07.2018 23:47

Italy police say they have recovered an 18th-century ebony desk that was illegally taken abroad after World War II and ended up in New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The desk, made with ivory and mother of pearl inlays, is considered to be a masterpiece of Pietro Piffetti, one of the most important ebony carpenters of his time. Italy's Carabinieri art squad said the desk's estimated worth was more than 2 million euros ($2.3 million).

After leaving Italy, the desk traveled to France and Switzerland only to arrive to the United States, where it was exhibited at the Met in the 1990s. Carabinieri police said after they learned of its absence from a recent Turin art exhibit, they launched an investigation and found the current owner, who agreed to return it.

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