France will reportedly loan a frieze from the Parthenon, displayed today at the Louvre, to Greece on the occasion of events and commemorations in 2021, the 200th anniversary of the beginning of the Greek War of Independence.
The issue was reportedly discussed in Paris this week during a meeting between visiting Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and French leader Emmanuel Macron.
Greece will reciprocate by loaning the internationally renowned museum a collection of ancient bronze sculptures that have never before been exhibited outside the country.
On display at the Louvre is a metope of the southern side of the Parthenon, which depict the Centauromachy, a mythical battle between the centaurs - half-man, half-horse - and the Lapiths, a people from the Thessaly region of central Greece. A Lapith woman is shown as being abducted, in a composition that retains much of the early Classical style.
One metope remains in Athens, while another 15 were sliced off the Parthenon by notorious Lord Elgin in the early part of the 19th century, before the Greek revolution against dour Ottoman rule.
This high-relief marble metope was sent by Louis François Sébastien Fauvel to the Comte de Choiseul-Gouffier during the French Revolution.