People: Greek gifts with a history

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The Independent Online
HIS collection of ancient Greek artefacts is extensive and, Constantine Mitsotakis acknowledges, some of it may have reached him by dubious means. The Greek Prime Minister said he had 'bought the collection on the open market like all collectors do' and if he had not done so 'perhaps the pieces would today be sold in either Germany or the United States'.

An archaeologist at the Heraklion Museum, on the island of Crete, revealed that 250 vases, 400 pearls, 45 seals and 15 gold pieces in the Mitsotakis collection came from a Minoan site near the Odigitrias Monastery, where two tombs were raided in 1979.

Mr Mitsotakis said he intended to present his treasures, on display in Athens, to the museum in Khania, his home town in Crete.

IT began as a joke, but soon nearly everything was turning Brown in Steamboat Springs. Since the recent dedication of the James Brown Soul Center of the Universe Bridge, merchants in the Colorado ski resort have done well with James Brownies, James Brown Roast Coffee and James Brown Ale.

Townspeople were charmed by James Brown, the soul singer, when he paid his first visit to Steamboat Springs for the dedication of the bridge. Naming the span for Brown was proposed in fun, but the idea caught on and outpolled other suggestions in a community vote. Some residents opposed the honour because Brown has served time in jail.

THEY probably won't name a bridge for Wilson Pickett, but the soul singer is also about to do time in jail. He was sentenced to a year's incarceration, plus five years' probation, for hitting an 86-year-old pedestrian while driving drunk in April 1992. Pickett also must pay a fine, continue treatment for his drinking problem and perform 200 hours of community service in New Jersey.

IN A sparsely furnished townhouse in London, Ontario, Khadiga Gurhan collects social benefits, watches television and looks after her four young children. Another unskilled, unemployable single mother? Not quite.

The 35-year-old second wife of Mohamed Farah Aideed, the Somali warlord, went to Canada as a refugee four years ago, feeling it would be safer than Mogadishu for herself and the children.

She married Aideed in 1984 and lived with him for the next four years in India, where he was Somalia's ambassador. Now she follows the news of her husband's confrontation with UN forces on CNN, and keeps to herself in the sparsely furnished house. 'I don't like to live on welfare,' she told a Toronto newspaper. 'It's shameful. But my husband has no money. He's a rebel.'

(Photograph omitted)