Greek Cultural Heritage Law

Greek Cultural Heritage Law – What you should know at a glance!

The main Greek law protecting cultural Heritage is Law No. 3028/2002.  

Law No. 3865/2008  mainly deals with the fight of illicit trafficking in cultural objects but may of its articles are  practically not in force.

Law 3028 governing antiquities gives following main definitions:

– Cultural Objects: “testimonies of the existence and the individual and collective creativity of human kind”.

Attention:  Greek law distinguishes between “Cultural Objects” and “Monuments” .

Most of the strict regulations stipulated in law 3028/2002 apply only to “Monuments”

– Monuments: “cultural objects which constitute material testimonies belonging to the cultural heritage of the country and which deserve special protection”. The law stipulates following categories: a) ancient monuments b) recent monuments c) immovable monuments d) movable monuments.

– Ancient Monuments or Antiquities: all cultural objects (artifacts and monuments) back to prehistoric, ancient, Byzantine and post-Byzantine times up to 1830. Archaeological Monuments also include caves and paleontological remains, for which there is no evidence that they are related to human existence.

– Archaeological Sites: areas on land, at sea, in lakes or rivers that contain or there is evidence that they contain, ancient monuments, or which have constituted or there is evidence that hey have constituted monumental, urban or burial groups from ancient times up to 1830. Archaeological sites shall also include the necessary open space so as to allow the preserved monuments to be considered in a historical, aesthetic and functional unity.

– Recent Monuments:  cultural objects dating after 1830, which deserve protection due to their historical artistic or scientific significance, in accordance with the distinctions of article 20.