Croatia Declassifies Documents in Connection with Seuso Treasure

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ZAGREB, January 6, 2019 – The Croatian government decided to declassify the archive documentation of a commission tasked with coordinating activities in connection with artifacts from the “Seuso Treasure” that consists of 14 large decorated silver vessels and a copper cauldron which contained them.

It is supposed that patrician Seuso (Sevso) owned this Roman-era silver collection. Sevso was a high-ranking Roman official who lived in the region that is today west Hungary. The hoard was named after a Latin inscription on one of the large plates: “Let these, O Sevso, yours for many ages be, small vessels fit to serve your offspring worthily.”

The first pieces appeared on the market in London in 1980, and the treasure was acquired by a consortium headed by Spencer Compton, 7th Marquess of Northampton. Documentation was provided in which it was stated that it had been found in the Tyre and Sidon regions of Lebanon. It was put up for sale in New York City in 1990 by Sotheby’s, but the sale was halted when the documentation was found to be false, and the governments of Hungary, Croatia and Lebanon made claims of ownership.

The treasure seems to have been discovered in the 1970s in circumstances that remain murky.

Croatia’s authorities have claimed that this hoard of silver objects had been excavated in the Istrian town of Barbariga.

On the other hand, the Hungarians insist that the treasure was originally from the area of its Balaton Lake.

In March 2014, Hungarian media outlets reported that a half of the 14 silver objects were repatriated to Hungary, and Prime Minister Viktor Orban said that 15 million euros had been spent for the restitution of the treasure. The objects were put on display in Budapest.

More news on the Croatian history can be found in our Lifestyle section.


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