Penn Library Will Return 9th-Century Documents Found to Have Been Stolen From Italian Archive
The University of Pennsylvania has voluntarily agreed to return two ancient parchment documents to an Italian archive from which they had been stolen, apparently in the 1990s, according to a formal stipulation filed in federal court in Philadelphia last month.
The heist was the work of an unknown thief and happened years before the papers surfaced at Penn.
The documents, which record land transactions in the 820s in southern Italy, were acquired in the late 1990s by the late collector Lawrence J. Schoenberg, who bestowed his collection of manuscripts and books on the university in 2011.
The Schoenberg Collection at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries, consisting of about 300 separate items, is particularly rich in medieval and Renaissance books and manuscripts.
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