Restitution of cultural objects: Poland-Latvia 2006-2012

Due to long and complex history, Baltic states are home to many unique valuable cultural objects. Touched by wars and other twists and turns of fate, lots of these objects were relocated and turned out to be in the possession of other countries. Traces of some of them are lost forever, whereas location of certain individual objects luckily becomes known to competent authorities. This is where the restitution cases begin.


One of the important Latvian cases is about:

-        Reading desk made by wood carver Tobias Heintz (1589-1653) and presented to Holy Trinity Church in 1617, which had been enchased in Jelgava museum from 1886 (please see the preview image);

-        Bronze candelabra of Riga Saint Peter’s Cathedral, made by Riga master Hans Mayer in 1596 on commission from Riga city hall. You can find detailed information about the object in the fragment from the Old Riga - Research into the history and archaeology of the city (Volume 5; in Latvian) – old-riga-research-in-history-and-archaeology-of-the-city.pdf


The case is described by the expert personally working on this long-lasting restitution procedure, former legal head of State Inspection on Protection of Cultural Monuments, Ms.Līga Ābele:


Image on preview:

Video: part of lecture filmed during the Cultural Heritage and Art Law: 1st seminar for practitioners held in Riga Graduate School of Law on 26th January 2017