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The statues outside the Shelbourne Hotel are set to be restored

By James Fenton

September 24, 2020 at 9:42am

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The Shelbourne Hotel will restore four statues that were removed back in July due to possible links with slavery.

The four statues had stood outside the Shelbourne Hotel for 153 years before they were removed during a summer which saw Black Lives Matter demonstrations take place all over the world.

At the time, the hotel's General Manager JP Kavanagh said "it was a decision taken just by us with our owner and operator. This decision has been coming for a number of weeks given what has been happening in the world."

It was thought that the sculptures depicted two princesses from Nubia, a region along the Nile, and their slave girls holding torches aloft. However, according to the Irish Times, the works have since been examined by a UCD expert who found they actually represent Egyptian and Nubian women.

The statues will be restored to the Shelbourne Hotel's facade along with a plaque explaining their background.

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