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Ancient Object Returned

RESCUED RELIC An Egyptian official examines the returned sarcophagus. It’s known as the Green Coffin. MOHAMED SALAH—AP

On January 2, officials in Egypt said an ancient sarcophagus had finally been returned. It was stolen years ago. Investigators say the coffin was smuggled into the United States in 2008. It has been at the Houston Museum of Natural Science, in Texas, since 2013.

U.S. authorities said in September that the sarcophagus would be sent back. “We are pleased that this object will be returned to Egypt, where it rightfully belongs,” Alvin L. Bragg said. He’s a top law-enforcement official in New York City.

The sarcophagus may have belonged to an ancient priest named Ankhemmaat. It’s one of many stolen artifacts that have been returned to Egypt. In 2021, the Egyptian government recovered 5,300 of them from around the world.