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Offline civilwarrenTopic starter
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« on: February 26, 2009, 08:02:50 am »
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From the Associated Press: Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2009

MEXICO CITY ? Mexico put on display Tuesday selections from the largest private collection of archaeological artifacts ever donated to the government.

The full set of 8,100 pieces range in size from quarter-ton statues of the god Quetzalcoatl to tiny figurines. Select pieces were exhibited at the Xochicalco archaeological site south of Mexico City.

The pre-Hispanic relics belonged to American dentist Milton Leoff, who settled in Mexico and began collecting artifacts from the Aztec, Olmec, Mayan and other cultures in the 1930s.

A 1972 law set limits on private collections, but allowed collectors to keep their pieces if they registered them with the government.

The National Institute of Anthropology and History called the collection the largest private donation of its kind to the Mexican government.

The agency says Leoff's widow, Nadine Vinot, donated the collection on the condition it be kept together.

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