Stanley: Coomassie and Magdala (1874)

The journalist Henry Morton Stanley covered the exploits of the Anglo-Indian invasion force of the ›Abyssinian Expedition‹ against the Ethiopian king Tewodros II, which came to a head at the Battle of Mäqdäla on 13 April 1868. After storming Tewodros‘ stronghold of Mäqdäla, the British soldiers looted the mountain fortress – which had served as repository for countless treasures recently looted by Tewodros himself from all over the Ethiopian kingdom as a means to establish his claim to sovereignty. A crown and chalice described by Stanley can be identified with items now in the possession of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, where claims for restitution date back to the 1870s.

commented by Verena Krebs

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