Gennadius Library, Athens

In 1873 Heinrich Schliemann announced to the world that he had found the treasure of Homer’s Trojan king Priam. Schliemann later had his wife, Sophia, photographed wearing jewelry from the treasure, including a spectacular gold diadem with pendants and chains.

But all was not as Schliemann claimed. His assistant, Wilhelm Dörpfeld, later showed that much of the treasure dated to the late third millennium B.C., a thousand years earlier than Homer’s Troy. Schliemann also falsified records and lied about finding the treasure intact; author David Traill argues that the artifacts came from several findspots.

After Schliemann smuggled the treasure to Athens, the Turkish government sued him. Schliemann paid the Ottomans 50,000 francs and then presented the Trojan gold to Germany, where it resided until it was seized by the Russians during World War II. Stored away for 50 years, the gold was finally put on display at the Pushkin Museum in 1996.