A dinosaur skeleton is withdrawn from an auction after doubts are raised about its authenticity

Published:

22 Nov 2022 08:55 GMT

Shen, a Tyrannosaurus rex fossil, was expected to sell in Hong Kong for between $15 million and $25 million.

Christie’s auction house announced last Sunday that it is removing a Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton named Shen that was to be sold next November 30, after doubts arose about the number of bone replicas used in the specimen and the veracity of the lot description.

At first, Shen was expected to be sold in Hong Kong by between 15 and 25 million dollars.

According to a spokesman for the entity, Edward Lewine, aforementioned Per The New York Times, the owner changed his mind and decided “to loan the specimen to a museum for public display.” Asked about the reason for the removal of the skeleton, Christie’s representative said that the house believes it appropriate “to subject it to further study.”

In recent weeks, doubts about the authenticity of the fossil had come to light when a lawyer from the Black Hills Geological Research Institute, a company specializing in excavation and preparation of fossils based in South Dakota (USA). , warned Christie’s about the similarities between Shen and another skeleton named tyrannosaurus Stan that the house had sold in 2020.

Although Stan was auctioned off, the US institute retained the intellectual property rights to the specimen, allowing it to continue to sell. polyurethane molds made from the skeleton, which are currently priced at $120,000 each.

Peter Larson, the company’s president, said that when he first saw a photo of the new specimen, he realized the skull was identical to Stan’s, making it appear to him that Shen’s owner had purchased a cast from Black. Hills to complete the original bones.

“They’re using Stan to sell a dinosaur that isn’t Stan,” Larson said in an interview with The New York Times. “It’s very misleading”he added.

After a Black Hills attorney raised concerns with Christie’s this fall about the lot data — which did not make it clear to the public that the specimen included Stan casts — the auction house added new information about its auction materials. online, clarifying that the issue contained certain replicas.

It should be clarified that almost all dinosaur skeletons are incomplete, so casts of the bones of other specimens or reconstructed additions are needed to make them appear complete. The degree of authenticity of a skeleton depends on the number of original bones.

Source: Actualidad

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J. A. Allen

Author, blogger, freelance writer. Hater of spiders. Drinker of wine. Mother of hellions.

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