Good reason for Getty generosity

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The J. Paul Getty Museum said Tuesday it is returning a piece of a 1st century Roman fresco to Italy.

The 35-by-31-inch fragment of a landscape fresco was donated to the museum in 1996.

It shows two painted panels, bordered in red and gold, which depict several Roman buildings in a cityscape.

Rebecca Taylor, a spokeswoman for the J. Paul Getty Trust, said the museum noticed last year that it matched another piece of a wall painting that a private collector was returning to Italy.

Taylor says experts decided the two fragments came from the same fresco and Getty officials decided to return their piece.

The fragment has been removed from display and will be sent to the Italian Ministry of Culture in May, the museum said.

Taylor says the piece wasn’t a highlight of the museum’s collection.

The Getty has returned more than three dozen ancient artifacts that Italy claimed were looted from archaeological sites. But Taylor says the wall fragment is not believed to have been looted.

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