An antique bust, stolen from a German museum more than 70 years ago, has been found in the United States, after being bought for a pittance in a… flea market.
Bargain hunters keep repeating it, going to flea markets regularly is the guarantee of one day finding the rare pearl.
An American just experienced it after getting her hands on a real treasure for a paltry sum
She buys a Roman bust for only 33 euros at a flea market
Laura Young who lives in Austin (Texas) thus acquired, without knowing it, a work of Roman art of inestimable value, at an antique dealer.
It all started in 2018 when the young woman strolled through a second-hand store , located in the Texas capital. Observing the shelves of the store, his eye lingers on a marble bust of about twenty kilos.
Surprised by its very affordable price, she decides to buy it, without suspecting that it has just gotten the deal of the century.
“ I was just looking for something interesting (…) It was a good deal at $35 (about 33 euros, editor’s note), there was no reason not to buy it, ” Laura recently told the channel. American CNN .
Intrigued by this mysterious bust, she then decided to contact auction houses to find out if the work was from the period.
And against all odds, she will learn from the mouths of experts working for Sotheby’s that it is a bust from the Roman period dating from about… 2,000 years ago. In other words, a rare piece of inestimable value.
Upon investigation, Laura learned that the face depicted was that of a Roman military general believed to have lived in the 1st century AD. The last known owner of the bust was King Ludwig I of Bavaria who had given it to the Pompejanum Aschaffenburg , a Bavarian museum.
The work would then have disappeared during the Second World War, before resurfacing in 2018 in a Texas flea market. Experts believe the bust was stolen by an American stationed in Germany during the conflict.
The work should soon find its museum because an agreement has been reached between Laura Young and the German authorities, in return for a “ small intermediary commission ” for the young woman.