Museum announces fake antiques

Update: March, 17/2020 - 15:28


The bronze-like set, which has been rumoured to be valuable, found recently in Phú Yên Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Xuân Triệu

PHÚ YÊN — The provincial museum of Phú Yên has recently announced results on fake bronze antiques, stopping rumours that were circulating about the objects.

Nguyễn Hữu An, director of the museum, has signed a report stating that some objects, including a metal jar and two statues of frogs possessed by Lê Văn Bay in Tây Hòa District are not real antiques but fake ones.

“The objects cannot have values of up to thousands of billions (dozens of millions of US dollars) as per the rumours,” the report said.

An said the same objects have been mass-produced and sold at souvenir and fine art shops in the province.

“Many of them are also available online,” he said.

The jars were sold for VNĐ1-3 million ($43-129) according to the size, while the frogs are sold between VNĐ300,000 ($13) - 500,000 ($22).

Some sellers have tried to change the colour and level of oxidisation on the objects to make them look older and thus more expensive, An said.

This is not the first time such objects have appeared in the province, he said.

In 2016, a man came to the museum to offer the same set of objects, which were then found to be fake by the museum’s expert.

From the beginning of this year, there has been a rumour that Lê Văn Bay’s family had a valuable set of antiques.

Bronze objects possessed by Lê Văn Bay's family. — Photo

The set includes a jar with a cover, which measures 30cm in height and 15cm in diameter, and was carved with eight human figures; and two frogs, which measured 7cm in height and 19cm in length.

The objects were carved with four Chinese characters at the bottom.

Bay did not know whether the objects were antiques or not. He asked the museum experts to help check them.

Bay said he found the objects 13 years ago when he was on a field trip in the border between the Central Highlands and Cambodia.

He said his family guessed the objects were around 2,000 years old. Yet he did not know who started the rumour that the set was made centuries ago and was extremely valuable. — VNS