Museums

In London there are museum of all kinds. There are about 280 museums and gallery's. You can for example go to The Beatles Story and Sherlock Holmes museum, and many museums are free. Londons museums offer everything, for example pop artists, works of art, science, culture, and also elements from many other cultures. The most visited museums are The British Museum and The Natural History Museum, Science Museum and Madame Tussauds. 

Text: Sonja Nylund

Sources: Wikipedia, List of museum in London, 21.2.17 

VisitLondon, 21.2.17, top 10 museum in London, Visitlondon.com

The British Museum


The British Museum is a museum in London which have cultural collections from all over the world. The British Museum was founded in 1753 and the first items came from Sir Hans Sloane's collections and opened to the public January 15, 1759. British Museum collections is based on the physician and scientist Sir Hans Sloane's private collection, which he sent to the state, and the museum is located in the same place today as when it opened is located in the Bloomsbury area of London.The museum has over 6 850 000 visitors per year. The museum's manager is Neil MacGregor.

History


The British Museum was the first national museum that didn't belong to a king or a church and it was freely open to the public. The museum's board decided to buy a converted mansion from the 1600s, Montagu House, as the site for the museum. The mansion had been bought from the Montagu family for 20,000 pounds They had two options to build the museum where it is today or where the Buckingham palace is today, but they came to the conclusion that it would be to expensive to build it on the Buckingham house place.
In the beginning, the museum also had a library with texts from such Thomason collection of writings from the Civil War and Davis Garrick over 1000 printed pieces.


The Egyptian, Roman and Greek dominated the antiquities in the beginning. In 1802 a Buildings Committee was set-up to plan for the expansion of the museum. King George III's personal library of 65,000 books, 19,000 pamphlets, maps, charts and topographical drawings, needed more room. The museum was the largest building site and Sir Robert Smirk's building was soon built up ( Sir Roberts Smirk's was the engineer). Until the mid 1800s, the museum's collections were relatively limited, but in 1851, for the first time, the museum started to collect British and European medieval antiquities and embark on Asia. In 1887 a lot material was moved away from the Museum to the Natural History Museum.

In 1884 the exhibition halls were introduced. In 1953 the museum celebrated its 200 anniversary.

The British Museum today

Nowadays The British Museum not have any kind of natural history. From the beginning the collection was 1753 objects and nowadays the museum has grown to over thirteen million objects and at The Natural History Museum 70 million object's. Today, The British Library has moved from the museum to a whole own building. In 2013 the museum received a record 6.7 million visitors and the most popular visited exhibition is "Life and Death in Pompeii and Herculaneum" and "Ice Age Art".

Today the museum has different objects from all periods, e.g. Stone age, Bronz Age, Iron age, The Middle Age and Renaissance to Modern. They also have things from different continents, e.g. South Asia, east Asia, Oceania, Africa and America.

The Department of prints and drawings holds the national collection of western prints and drawings. It ranks as one of the largest and best print room collections. Since the museum was founded in 1808, the prints and drawings collection has grown as one of the richest and largest collections in the world.They have 50 000 drawings and over two million prints.There are groups of drawings by Leonardo da Vinci ,Raphael and Michelangelo. There are about a million British prints including more than 20,000 satires and outstanding collections of works by William Blake and Thomas Bewick

Text: Sonja Nylund

Sources:

British Museum, Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, 20.2.2017 (Swedish)

British Museum, Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, 20.2.2017 (English)

 British Museum, 20.2.2017

The Natural history museum

History

The Natural History Museum is also known as British Museum Natural History. It is one of the biggest museums in London. It was built in 1860. They have everything from dinosaurs to dodo birds, so you can see almost everything when it comes to nature and history.The founder of the museum was Sir Hans Sloane, he was also the founder of the The British museum which is also one of the biggest museums in London. Sir Hans Sloane had a collection of human skeletons, animals and dried plants which was the beginning for the Natural History Museum. Owen Richard was a paleontologist who was very involved with the making of the Natural History Museum.

The Natural History Museum was not as big as The British Museum and the architecture wasn't so good compared to that of the British Museum. So he decided to run a competition in 1864 and the winner got to design the new building. The winner was the civil engineer Captain Francis Fowke, who died shortly after he had won the competition. After Captain Francis Fowke had died his role was taken over by Alfred Waterhouse, Alfred Waterhouse decided to do like he wanted not like Francis Fowke. He decided to do it in Romanesque style. Many castles were built in Romanesque style for example the great abbey churches.

The original plans to build wings on the side of the building were soon abandoned for budget reasons. The space these would have occupied are now taken by the Earth Galleries and Darwin Centre. Work began in 1873 and was completed in 1880. The Natural history museum was still a part of The British Museum until 1992 when it officially changed to Natural History Museum.

Exhibits

In 1986 the museum opened a new area named the Geological Museum. The new are became very famous for the new exhibitions which included an active vulcano model, an earthquake model and one of the first computers.

One of the most visited exhibitions is the dinosaur Dippy. The skeleton cast was presented to the Museum by industrialist Andrew Carnegie in May 1905, but didn't make the move to the iconic Hintze Hall until 1979.

The Diploducus has since been the first sight to greet Museum visitors as they pass through the main entrance of The Natural History Museum.

The red zone gallery contains the evolution of the Earth and the history about the evolution. In the red zone you can finde The Earth Lab which focuses on geology, and in the geology center you can look at fossils, minerals and rocks. In the geology zone they have an area that is only opened for reserved groups, The Lab area. In the Lab area the groups are allowed to use microscopes to look a bit closer on fossils. In the Red Zone there is also Earth's Treasury, Lasting Impressions, Restless Surface, Earth Today and Tomorrow, From the Beginning, Volcanoes and Earthquakes, Visions of Earth and The Waterhouse Gallery.

The Green Zone contains the wildlife and the evolution of the planets. In the green Zone you can look at creepy crawlies, you can see a life-size model of a termite mound, the cycle of insect life and how colonies start with a single queen. You can also look at birds, and in the bird zone there is a selection of eggs ranging from the tiniest bird like the hummingbird to the biggest like the elephant bird and the bird zone also has extinct birds like the Dodo bird. You can see Fossile Marine Reptiles , crocodiles that lived in the sea during the jurassic times and a female ichthyosaur fossil with evidence of six unborn young in her womb. If you want to see the earth from the beginning you should go to the Mineral Zone, where you can find pieces from Sir Hans Sloane collection and a wall display of many more meteorite specimens.

In the Fossils from Britain Zone some of the few specimens discovered from Britain's age of mammals 65 million years ago and fossils once thought to be darts flung from the heavens during thunderstorms. If you want to see the world's largest collection of coloured diamonds and discover gems that glow in the dark, and marvel at rare meteorites from out of this world. You can see all of this in The Vault Zone.

The blue zone contains the life on earth. You can actually see dinosaurs and explore how they lived, the first fossil ever found from a Tyrannosaurus, one of the largest carnivores ever to have walked on the earth, the skull of a plant-eating Triceratops and one of the largest meat-eaters ever walked in Europe, the Baryonyx..

The Orange Zone contains The Darwin Centre and Wildlife Garden. In the Darwin Center there is a building named the Cocoon. Inside the Cocoon you can look at hundreds of museum specimens of for example butterflies and huge tarantulas. The Wildlife Garden is home to thousands of British flowers and different kindes of plants and 2,800 species have been identified in the garden since it opened in 1995.

If you want to explore the museum after opening hours you can sleep over with your friends in the museum. The sleepover got very popular after the movie Night at the museum.

Text: Sandra Nylund

Sources:

Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, Natural History Museum 20.2.2017

Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, Natural History London 20.2.2017

Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, Romanesque architecture 20.2.2017

Natural History Museum, Natural History Museum 20.2.2017

Natural History Museum, Creepy Crawlies 20.2.2017

Londonist, London's best sleepovers, 21.2 17

Madame Tussauds

Madame Tussauds is wax museum in London. The building is long and elegant. There are also some smaller museums in Amsterdam, Berlin, Hong Kong, Hollywood, Las Vegas, New York and Vienna. The museum was founded by Marie Tussaud. It used to be known as "Madame Tussaud's", but today isn't the aphostrophe longer used . The museum tells who all the biggest celebrities of the moment are and who the history's greatest celebrities were. When the original and the copy are photographed side by side, is it extremely difficult to see any difference. Madame Tussauds wax museum has now become a major tourist attraction in London

History

Marie Tussaud was born as Marie Grosholtz in 1761, in France. Marie Tussaud's father died in the Seven Years' war before Marie was born. Marie's mot her moved with her to Bern to work as a housekeeper for a doctor who used wax figures to illustrate anatomy. He was like an uncle to Marie and she learned the art of creating wax figures. When the doctor died 1794, Marie Tussaud inherited his collection of wax models. The next 33 years she was travelling around Europe. In 1795 she married Francois Tussaud and the buisness got a new name, Madame Tussaud's. Due to the Napoleonic Wars she couldn't return to France. She traveled throughout Great Britain and Ireland while she was exhibiting her collection. In the end, she decided to get a local near where today's Wax Museum is located, on Baker Street. The museum opened in 1835.

Her last work was an image of herself. She made it six years before her death in 1850, 89 years old. Her two children inherited her collection. Today, however, Madame Tussauds isn't run by the family anymore but by "The Merlin Entertainments Group".

In 1925 many of the wax figures were destroyed in a fire, but the original molds were saved so the figures could be recreated again.

The exhibition

The wax museum is divided into several zones, so people of the same type of celebrity are in the same zone. Madame Tussauds is therefore very organized. In the A-List Party zone for example, you will probably see figures of Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio and the like. "Main Hall" is for kings, queens and statesmen. "London's soul" includes more than 400 years of London's history. "Garden Party" on the top floor consists of beautiful people and celebrities. "Legends and Stars" contains what you might expect. "200 years" is probably the most interesting section, where many of the wax maker's ramming is revealed.

"The Chamber of Horrors" is the most famous department. The cabinet is awful and includes torture and execution scenes that can make even insensitive and modern souls upset. The lighting is dramatic and the mood is nervously ghostly.

Text: Wilma Wikström

Sources:

Madame Tussauds, Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, 20.2.2017

Madame Tussauds London, 20.2.2017

Madame Tussauds Vaxmuseum i London  20.2.2017

Other museums:

The Beatles Story

The Beatles Story is an award-winning visitor attraction in London. The Beatles Story is a museum about The Beatles members' lives. It is located in Fab Four's hometown in Liverpool.The Beatles Story takes visitors through their lives, times, culture and music of The Beatles. The museum tells the story of their childhood and their journey to the top of their career. The Beatles Story was founded in May 1, 1990. Over 4 million people have visited the museum, from over 100 countries.

You can go on guided tours or sit and eat on the Fab4 Cafe. They museum has everything from The Beatles' guitars, the famous "Walk into history" picture and their jackets and clothes. They also have The Beatles hole drumset and many of their albums gathered.

Text: Sonja Nylund

Sources:

Albert dock, The Beatles Story,  21.2.17

The Beatles Story, Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, 21.2.17

Sherlock Holmes museum

The museum is located at 221b Baker street. The famous detective Sherlock Holmes lived at 221b Baker street between 1881-1904, according to the stories written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Mr. Holmes shared his rooms with his loyal friend and colleague Dr. Watson.

The house was formerly used as a boarding house from 1860 to 1936, but when the business shot down Mr. Sherlock and Dr. Watson moved in as tenants.

The museum opened in 1990 and the museum is a privately run museum. In the museum you can see a lot of things that Mr. Sherlock and Dr. Dawson had. For example a table set that they ate from, Sherlock's laboratory and Sherlock Holmes "Sitting Room". In the livingroom you can find items like Dr. Dawson's hat (a typical black bowler hat), a violin and pipes.

The house has four floors, the first floor is a gift shop. On the second floor is the living room and bedroom of Holmes. The third floor has rooms for Watson and Mrs Hudson, the landlady and the owner of the house. On the fourth floor there are wax figures of various characters from the stories. Outside the museum stands a guard, which is really typical of England.

Text: Sandra Nylund

Sources:

Sherlock Holmes and Doctor John H. Watson, 21.2.2017

Sherlock Holmes Museum, Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization, 21.2.2017

Sherlock Holms Museum at 221b Baker Street, London ,Amusing Planet, 21.2. 2017

Science Museum

The Science Museum is a huge museum of science and technology, on Exhibition Road in South Kensington in London. The museum is the most visited science and technology museum in Europe. It was founded in 1857 and today is it one of the London's major tourist attractions. The museum is annually attracting 3.3 million visitors. The Science Museum was founded in 1857 by Bennet Woodcroft.

In the museum you can find everything from space, anathomy of animals and engines to history of medicine.

It is a part of the National Museum of Science and Industry, which is designed by architect Sir Richard Allison. He designed the British residence in Diplomatstaden, Stockholm as well.
At the beginning, the museum was a part of the South Kensington Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum. They became separated as the Museum of Patents in 1858 and the Patent Office Museum in 1863. In 1865 the scientific and technological department got its current name. Until 1909 the Patent Office Museum continued as a separate entity. The museum has more than 300 000 items in its collections. The museum is full of innovations and educational descriptions of how these inventions have changed us, our communities and the world. In many exhibitions visitors will be involved in different ways.

Text: Wilma Wikström

Sources:

Science Museum London, Wikimedia Foundation Inc. a non-profit organization. 21.2.2017

Science Museum,  21.2.2017

Science Museum, (Londonportalen) 21.2.2017