Keep col­lect­ing for our mu­se­ums

Country Life Every Week - - Athena - Cul­tural Cru­sader

READ­ERS of COUN­TRY LIFE will have felt a sense of déjà vu when the Min­is­ter for Cul­ture, Matt Han­cock, an­nounced two weeks ago that he was de­lay­ing the grant of an ex­port li­cence for two rav­ish­ing works of Mughal art, a rare 17th-cen­tury jade­and-gold flask dec­o­rated with emer­alds and ru­bies and an 18th-cen­tury enamel, ruby and sap­phire huqqa pipe. Once in the col­lec­tion of Clive of In­dia, they have been pur­chased for the Qatar Mu­seum of Is­lamic Art. Mu­se­ums or in­di­vid­u­als in this coun­try have un­til April 17 (for the huqqa) and May 17 (for the flask) to raise funds to ac­quire the pieces—£6 mil­lion for the flask and £240,000 for the huqqa.

We’ve been here be­fore: the Qataris bought both items at Christie’s in 2004

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