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Collections Confiscated - Coin Collectors criminalized



 
 
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  #1  
Old January 31st 09, 08:42 PM posted to rec.collecting.coins
Dave Welsh
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 72
Default Collections Confiscated - Coin Collectors criminalized

German numismatists ring the alarm bells

German cultural authorities have begun searching private homes and seizing
entire collections of antique coins, if provenance of only a few coins in
the collection is not documented. These invasions are being conducted under
the new German laws on importation of cultural property. Coins being
subjected to such scrutiny are not restricted to ancient coins presumed to
have been excavated - medieval and antique modern coins are also subject to
the same measures. In one case, a pensioner from the Thuringian Eisenberg
recently acquired four old coins on an Internet auction site. Shortly
afterwards his house was searched, ending with seizure of his entire
collection. Collectors are understandably alarmed, because very few coins in
their collections have provenances that will satisfy the new laws. When a
collection becomes suspect only a short time is being allowed to prove licit
origin before the collection is seized, and then even if the suspicion is
unfounded, it is very difficult to recover the collection.

Not only coins, but all "cultural objects" more than 100 years old are
subject to these new cultural laws, leading to fears that stamp collections,
collections of graphic arts and antique jewelry may also be targeted. The
list of "cultural objects" in the 1970 UNESCO Convention is very extensive,
including such common things as coins, postage stamps, photographs and
printed books.

The new laws on importation of cultural property became effective in
September 2008, after the German government finally gave in to demands that
importation of unprovenanced coins and other artifacts should be prevented,
because archaeologists allege that looting of archaeological sites is driven
by the collecting market. This allegation is unproven - no verifiable,
factual evidence has yet been presented to support it.

There is however significant evidence that looting would continue unabated
even if collecting could be prevented in Europe and other areas where
cultural property laws are respected. Meanwhile German coin collectors now
feel completely insecure, like criminals suspected of breaking the law.
According to Ulf Draeger - head of the Moritzburg Landesmünzkabinetts and
chairman of the German Society of Medallic Arts - the entry into force of
these new laws, despite their laudable intentions, has led to significant
collateral damage in only a short time. His conclusion: "If this situation
continues, then we can pack up."

For a summary in English see
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Unidroit-L/message/3348

For the original articles in German see
http://www.numismatische-gesellschaft.de/
http://tinyurl.com/dfc7sp
http://tinyurl.com/bc8pqz

Google's translator conveys the sense of these articles for those who cannot
read German.

Dave Welsh



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  #2  
Old January 31st 09, 09:09 PM posted to rec.collecting.coins
Arizona Coin Collector
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,199
Default Collections Confiscated - Coin Collectors criminalized

Hello

The translation I got and read was not the
same as you posted below.

Yahoo has this web site you
can use to translate.

Go to: http://babelfish.yahoo.com/ .

Indicate language to translate to.
(German to English)

Now plug in the web link below and click
Translate.

www.numismatische-gesellschaft.de/

..-----------------------------------------------

"Dave Welsh" wrote in message
...

German numismatists ring the alarm bells

German cultural authorities have begun searching private homes and seizing
entire collections of antique coins, if provenance of only a few coins in
the collection is not documented. These invasions are being conducted
under
the new German laws on importation of cultural property. Coins being
subjected to such scrutiny are not restricted to ancient coins presumed to
have been excavated - medieval and antique modern coins are also subject
to
the same measures. In one case, a pensioner from the Thuringian Eisenberg
recently acquired four old coins on an Internet auction site. Shortly
afterwards his house was searched, ending with seizure of his entire
collection. Collectors are understandably alarmed, because very few coins
in
their collections have provenances that will satisfy the new laws. When a
collection becomes suspect only a short time is being allowed to prove
licit
origin before the collection is seized, and then even if the suspicion is
unfounded, it is very difficult to recover the collection.

Not only coins, but all "cultural objects" more than 100 years old are
subject to these new cultural laws, leading to fears that stamp
collections,
collections of graphic arts and antique jewelry may also be targeted. The
list of "cultural objects" in the 1970 UNESCO Convention is very
extensive,
including such common things as coins, postage stamps, photographs and
printed books.

The new laws on importation of cultural property became effective in
September 2008, after the German government finally gave in to demands
that
importation of unprovenanced coins and other artifacts should be
prevented,
because archaeologists allege that looting of archaeological sites is
driven
by the collecting market. This allegation is unproven - no verifiable,
factual evidence has yet been presented to support it.

There is however significant evidence that looting would continue unabated
even if collecting could be prevented in Europe and other areas where
cultural property laws are respected. Meanwhile German coin collectors now
feel completely insecure, like criminals suspected of breaking the law.
According to Ulf Draeger - head of the Moritzburg Landesmünzkabinetts and
chairman of the German Society of Medallic Arts - the entry into force of
these new laws, despite their laudable intentions, has led to significant
collateral damage in only a short time. His conclusion: "If this situation
continues, then we can pack up."

For a summary in English see
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Unidroit-L/message/3348

For the original articles in German see
http://www.numismatische-gesellschaft.de/
http://tinyurl.com/dfc7sp
http://tinyurl.com/bc8pqz

Google's translator conveys the sense of these articles for those who
cannot
read German.

Dave Welsh





  #3  
Old February 1st 09, 12:48 PM posted to rec.collecting.coins
mazorj
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,169
Default Collections Confiscated - Coin Collectors criminalized


"Arizona Coin Collector" wrote in message
m...
Hello

The translation I got and read was not the
same as you posted below.

Yahoo has this web site you
can use to translate.

Go to: http://babelfish.yahoo.com/ .

Indicate language to translate to.
(German to English)

Now plug in the web link below and click Translate.

www.numismatische-gesellschaft.de/


His post appeared to be a summarization, not a literal translation.
Without doing the same exercise, I'll just ask whether his summary was
reasonably accurate or grossly overstated? Given the nature of what
the German authorities allegedly are doing, you don't need to
embellish the story. It's alarming enough as is. And probably is
reminding their older generation of house searches for "contraband"
like Jews, firearms, and illegal radios capable of receiving BBC
broadcasts.

"Dave Welsh" wrote in message
...

German numismatists ring the alarm bells

German cultural authorities have begun searching private homes and
seizing
entire collections of antique coins, if provenance of only a few
coins in
the collection is not documented. These invasions are being
conducted under
the new German laws on importation of cultural property. Coins
being
subjected to such scrutiny are not restricted to ancient coins
presumed to
have been excavated - medieval and antique modern coins are also
subject to
the same measures. In one case, a pensioner from the Thuringian
Eisenberg
recently acquired four old coins on an Internet auction site.
Shortly
afterwards his house was searched, ending with seizure of his
entire
collection. Collectors are understandably alarmed, because very few
coins in
their collections have provenances that will satisfy the new laws.
When a
collection becomes suspect only a short time is being allowed to
prove licit
origin before the collection is seized, and then even if the
suspicion is
unfounded, it is very difficult to recover the collection.

Not only coins, but all "cultural objects" more than 100 years old
are
subject to these new cultural laws, leading to fears that stamp
collections,
collections of graphic arts and antique jewelry may also be
targeted. The
list of "cultural objects" in the 1970 UNESCO Convention is very
extensive,
including such common things as coins, postage stamps, photographs
and
printed books.

The new laws on importation of cultural property became effective
in
September 2008, after the German government finally gave in to
demands that importation of unprovenanced coins and other artifacts
should be prevented,
because archaeologists allege that looting of archaeological sites
is driven
by the collecting market. This allegation is unproven - no
verifiable,
factual evidence has yet been presented to support it.

There is however significant evidence that looting would continue
unabated
even if collecting could be prevented in Europe and other areas
where
cultural property laws are respected. Meanwhile German coin
collectors now
feel completely insecure, like criminals suspected of breaking the
law.
According to Ulf Draeger - head of the Moritzburg
Landesmünzkabinetts and
chairman of the German Society of Medallic Arts - the entry into
force of
these new laws, despite their laudable intentions, has led to
significant
collateral damage in only a short time. His conclusion: "If this
situation
continues, then we can pack up."

For a summary in English see
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Unidroit-L/message/3348

For the original articles in German see
http://www.numismatische-gesellschaft.de/
http://tinyurl.com/dfc7sp
http://tinyurl.com/bc8pqz

Google's translator conveys the sense of these articles for those
who cannot read German.

Dave Welsh



  #4  
Old February 2nd 09, 02:42 AM posted to rec.collecting.coins
Dave Welsh
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 72
Default Collections Confiscated - Coin Collectors criminalized

My message was not presented as being a translation of any one article. It
was an overview of what all of them reported, with additional facts from
other sources.

Dave Welsh



"Arizona Coin Collector" wrote in message
m...
Hello

The translation I got and read was not the
same as you posted below.

Yahoo has this web site you
can use to translate.

Go to:
http://babelfish.yahoo.com/ .

Indicate language to translate to.
(German to English)

Now plug in the web link below and click
Translate.

www.numismatische-gesellschaft.de/

.-----------------------------------------------



  #5  
Old February 4th 09, 04:26 AM posted to rec.collecting.coins
William Earl Haskell
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 3
Default Collections Confiscated - Coin Collectors criminalized

Dave Welsh wrote:
German numismatists ring the alarm bells

German cultural authorities have begun searching private homes and seizing
entire collections of antique coins,


I thought Hermann Goering was dead.
  #6  
Old February 4th 09, 11:05 AM posted to rec.collecting.coins
Dave Welsh
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 72
Default Collections Confiscated - Coin Collectors criminalized

Unfortunately before that happened, "der Dicke" cleverly made fools of the
Allied authorities conducting the Nueremburg war crimes trials. First, he
made the prosecutor who questioned him look like a complete idiot - and then
he cheated the hangman. Whatever one may think of his politics and morals,
Goering was a forceful and able personality.

As to who in the Third Reich would have been the bane of coin collectors, I
am inclined to think that Heinrich Himmler would be a far more appropriate
choice. While Goering was not the sort of person one would wish to be
associated with, he was a dedicated collector of "cultural objects."
Particularly, those that had once been owned by Jews ... the "objekte."

Dave Welsh


"William Earl Haskell" wrote in message
...
Dave Welsh wrote:
German numismatists ring the alarm bells

German cultural authorities have begun searching private homes and

seizing
entire collections of antique coins,


I thought Hermann Goering was dead.



 




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