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Shipwreck with Dutch art treasure may be salvaged

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

MOSCOW – A Russian foundation wants to salvage a 1771 Dutch shipwreck because of its valuable contents of gold, silver, bronze and porcelain. The treasure had been ordered by Czarina Catherine the Great and included 27 paintings by Dutch masters. Her art purchases formed the basis for St. Petersburg’s Hermitage Museum’s high quality collection. The Russians are particularly interested in the paintings, which could represent a value of 100 million euro. The canvases may be preserved in chests of lead, the eighteenth century protective mode of transportation. Maritime experts agree that the schooner Frau Maria can be lifted from its resting place off the Finnish coast where it lies at a depth of 41 meters.