American tourist snaps Italian statue’s finger off!

These americans and there i too sabi sef.
Violating the first rule of visiting a museum — look but don’t touch the art — an American tourist in Italy has generated shock and outrage by snapping the finger off a 600-year-old statue at a museum in Florence. Imagine that! If that statue were mine i’d demand they rip off his own finger as compensation. Just kidding.

According to the Italian newspaper, Corriere Fiorentino, the snap heard around the art world took place when an unnamed 55-year-old Missouri man visiting the city’s Museo dell’Opera del Duomo held his hand up against the outstretched palm of a statue of the Virgin Mary by the 15th-century sculptor Giovanni d’Ambrogio.

Whatwas he doing, comparing hand spans? or was he giving the statue a high five? Whatever he did, the end result was that the pinky finger of the statue’s right hand was broken off.

Despite apologizing for his action, the tourist could be liable for a large fine, according to The (UK) Independent.

Even a financial penalty, however, is unlikely to assuage local Florentines, experienced art lovers and other travelers who would argue that anyone with the means to travel should also possess the understanding that art in museums is meant to be seen and not touched.

But this isn’t the first time the statue has lost a finger. The pinky was actually a plaster replacement for the long-missing marble original.

And it isn’t the first priceless piece of art to be damaged by accident. In 2006, a visitor to the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, England, tripped and sent three Quing Dynasty vases crashing to the ground. Four years later, a woman visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York fell into a Picasso painting called “The Artist” and left it with a six-inch gash.

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