Ancient Egyptian marble sarcophagus sculpture, Cyfarthfa Castle museum, Merthyr Tydfil


Sculpture 9: Hoa Hakananai’a

Hoa Hakananai’a
Hoa Hakananai’a

The famous thousand-year-old Easter Island statue Hoa Hakananai’a in the British Museum.

It was taken from Rapa Nui in 1868 and acquired by the museum the next year. The carvings on the back (not shown) were added later to the statue while it was in situ.

Standing nearly two and a half metres high Hoa Hakananai’a dominates Room 24, dedicated to the theme Living and Dying.

Post originally published July 24th, 2013

Update: this week, according to news reports, a delegation is travelling from Rapa Nui (as Easter Island should be called) to request the state’s return.

A transcript of the BBC radio broadcast on this object in its series A History of the World in 100 Objects.