Amal Clooney should back off. Lord Elgin was a hero who saved the marbles for the world. DT 21Oct14 Selwood. "Any art lover who has read up the real story will know that the collection of marbles in the British Museum simply would not exist today without Elgin because they were being systematically destroyed in Athens. If Elgin had not intervened, they would be a mere memory, like the Afghani Buddhas at Bamiyan, dynamited into oblivion by the Taliban in 2001."