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News & Media
2 December 2006
Category: News

The following untruths have been reported in regards to the upcoming auction by Christie's of items belonging to King George I of the Hellenes, presumably without intention:
Daily Telegraph, 30/11/2006 (published 1st December 2006).
Greek Royal Family to sell heirlooms
Not true.
Royal Vendor: Former King Constantine & Queen Anne-Marie
Not true.
The Greek royal family in exile stripped of almost all of its property after a coup in 1967…
King Constantine and his family left Greece after his attempt to overthrow the junta in December 1967 was unsuccessful. The Colonels credited an account with an amount of money in compensation for the seizure of the royal family's property. This deposit was never withdrawn. After the fall of the junta, seven years later, Prime Misister Karamanlis annulled the seizure of the property and returned it to its rightful owners. Further negotiations took place between the Greek State and the former Greek royal family, leading to a law passed in 1992 (details in the Q&A section of this web site), which acknowledged that the property in question was private and belonged to the royal family. It was the next government which annulled the 1992 law and reinstated the junta law, by which everything was confiscated.
But the vendor, who refuses to be named, is almost certainly the deposed King Constantine II of Greece…
King Constantine, former king of the Hellenes is not the vendor.
It may be that the lots in the Christie's sale, …, comprise the only heirlooms ever salvaged, …
As far as we know, this is not true: there are lots which were not included in the exported items (1991), as there are also items which were exported and are not in the forthcoming sale.
Constantine is said to have been encouraged to sell the heirlooms after seeing the successes of two other royal sales at Christie's…
King Constantine is not the consignor.
Successive Greek governments have resisted demands to return royal estates and property to him…
The private property (including Tatoi and the chattels), had been returned in 1974 after being confiscate by the junta, and re-acknowledged by law as belonging to the royal family in 1992.
Constantine's collection contains another 100 pieces of Fabergé…
This is not king Constantine's collection.
Four years ago, -after hearings in the European Court for Human Rights-, the ex-king accepted £7 million from the Greek government in return for dropping his claims to palaces and other property in Greece.
The compensation was appointed because the royal family were vindicated in the ECHR, not for dropping their claims. Their 'claims' had already been accepted by the court. Furthermore, no member of the former Greek royal family had ever demanded any of the palaces as their own. These were always acknowledged as property of the Greek State.
When one is not fully aware of the correct information regarding legal and historical issues of the former Greek royal family, one can always check the official Greek royal family web site or contact the royal family office.

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