Rounding off today’s virtual #InternationalMuseumDay visit, we’re heading to the oldest room in the Museum – the Enlightenment Gallery. 2019. The displays convey a sense of how objects were organised and displayed during the 18th century. They researched rituals and cults in different cultures, collected religious artefacts, grouped gods into families and examined their attributes and functions. Learn about the 18th century, an era of new knowledge, scientific discovery, European colonialism and the transatlantic slave trade. This gallery carries a great selection of objects which represent a complete overview of the museums collection. The Enlightenment Gallery at the British Museum in London (founded in 1753), represents an eighteenth-century cabinet of curiosity. No wonder the British Museum's new display of oddities from the … COLLECTING: COLONIAL BOMBAY, BASRA, BAGHDAD AND THE ENLIGHTENMENT MUSEUM - Volume 30 The Enlightenment Gallery is home to a permanent exhibition, Enlightenment: Discovering the world in the Eighteenth Century. This room demonstrates how British and European collectors, antiquaries and explorers, attempted to make sense of and classify their world at this time, using objects rather than texts. This knowledge, combined with the new study of rock strata, led archaeologists to question the accepted date of the world's creation – 4004 BC – calculated from readings of the Bible. Visitor in Room 1. British Museum Enlightenment room, Discovering the world in the Eighteenth century. Scholars 'cracked the codes' in the 19th century, opening up thousands of years of history. For more details see the British Museum's Collection Database The 300 foot long gallery marks the culmination of the Museum’s 250th anniversary celebrations. © The Trustees of the British Museum. You'll find them, curiously, in the Enlightenment Gallery, that huge and spectacular room along the … We use cookies to make our website work more efficiently, to provide you with more personalised services or advertising to you, and to analyse traffic on our website. For more information on how we use cookies and how to manage cookies, please follow the 'Read more' link, otherwise select 'Accept and close'. Only a few rooms in the early Museum had manmade objects but case after case was filled with natural specimens from Sloane's collection and his library which included the 265 volumes of his herbarium. By 1880 there were so many natural history specimens that they needed a museum of their own – the Natural History Museum in South Kensington. You can let your curiosity and imagination create explanations behind these wonders, which at a glance, appear to have no rhyme or reason; try to experience how collectors would have viewed objects that they had never observed before, and attempt to classify them. The King’s Library also possesses around sixty-thousand royal books. In this era of colonialism and global trade, travellers, traders, scientists, explorers and diplomats created collections of ethnographic objects, including ceremonial and everyday items, thought representative of customs and cultures of people around the globe. In 1824, Charles Townley's famous collection of Greek and Roman sculptures, acquired on his Grand Tours in Italy, came to the British Museum. Millions of Africans were enslaved, many working in brutal conditions on hugely profitable sugar plantations. This room's displays reflect the close connection between Enlightenment and empire. The Gallery is presented in seven sections, depicting the different aspects of eighteenth-century disciplines: religion and ritual, trade and discovery, the birth of archaeology, art history, classification, the decipherment of ancient scripts and natural history. The collection also includes Sir Hans Sloane’s very own specimen tray: small compartments that contain botanical remedies ranging from a ground mummy’s finger (believed to cure bruises), a rhinoceros horn (used as an antidote for poison), and even hot chocolate (believed to help stomach problems). Much of this activity took place within the context of colonialism. The British Museum has now moved his bust from near the entrance to the Enlightenment Gallery which addresses Britain’s relationship with the slave trade. By the time of his death, he had collected 71,000 objects that were donated to the State and left for the public to enjoy, many of which can be found in The King’s Library. Some objects in this collection feature on the British Sign Language multimedia guide. In Langhorne Gardens, a residential area near Folkestone seafront, an imposing stone figure gazes across the English Channel. A compilation of footage of the Enlightenment Gallery. The broad spectrum of objects signifies Sloane’s and other collectors growing interest with natural philosophy in the eighteenth-century, and their growing desire to visualise and present their findings in an attempt to make knowledge about the natural world. This trade was at its height during the 18th century. It shows what the museum was like when it first started and helps visitors understand the great changes in thinking in the period known as the Enlightenment. Page optimized by WP Minify WordPress Plugin. This period, and its legacies, are now increasingly being reassessed from a range of critical perspectives. These were thought of as universal museums, and the British Museum was one such museum. British Museum shared a photo on Instagram: “The Enlightenment Gallery – photographed here by @solo_irenee – is the oldest space in the Museum,…” • … When I decided to make a sound map of the Enlightenment Galleries at the British Museum, I knew that I would have to echo this idea of omission within the structure of the map itself. Shield from New South Wales, Australia, around 18–19th century, Cista mystica (‘casket used in the mysteries’), BC 299–200. Explore how continuity and change have shaped Japan’s past and present and the country’s relationships with the rest of the world. As you walk through the permanent exhibition in the oldest room of the Museum, The King’s Library (constructed during 1823-1827, and formed by King George III), it is possible to imagine British explorers returning from far off lands with curious treasures to stimulate and titillate scientific minds. The slave trade was abolished by Parliament in 1807 and the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833 led to the end of slave ownership in most British colonies. Some of Dee's possessions can be viewed at the British Museum. The coins and medals collection was among the first part of the library to arrive at the Museum and they were arranged by country and ruler to help bring past history alive. Abolition was motivated by passionately disputed religious and moral arguments, but also by the declining profitability of slave-based labour and the increasing impact of slave rebellions, most notably the Haitian Revolution of 1791 and the 1831 Jamaica rebellion. I recorded the Enlightenment Gallery for an entire day, recording one hour of continuous sound in each of the seven sections of the gallery. Several pointed flint hand axes, a wooden shoe, birds of paradise, fish skin gauntlets and the skull and crown of the Deal warrior, are just a few of the items that can be found amongst the thousands of objects on display. A gallery displaying some of the finest Chinese ceramics in the world, from the Sir Percival David Collection. As a result the Gallery has managed to capture a sense of mystery, imagination, knowledge and charm in a compact yet extra-ordinary room. It also witnessed the aggressive global expansion of European colonialism and the transatlantic slave trade. It was opened in 2003 to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the British Museum. He later published them in beautifully illustrated folios. The gallery covers 7 major themes of Enlightenment classification: Religion & ritual, Trade & discovery, The birth of archaeology, Art & civilisation, Classifying the world, Ancient scripts and The natural world. In the early part of the century, Sir Hans Sloane filled his cabinets with curious 'artificial' (manmade) objects from around the world, including those collected from enslaved peoples in Jamaica. But antiquaries also began to survey and map Roman and earlier sites, such as Stonehenge, in a more scientific and systematic way and to learn more about the earliest Britons. Please enable JavaScript in your web browser to get the best experience. Enlightenment Gallery of the British Museum will instantly transfer you to the world 250 years ago, allowing you to breath the atmosphere of the museum … ), Enlightenment: Discovering the World in the Eighteenth Century (British Museum, 2004). Alongside Sir Hans Sloane's collection, the British Museum also houses objects from the voyages of Captain James Cook and Sir Joseph Banks to Australia, New Zealand, Tahiti and other Pacific islands. They collected artefacts and published illustrated accounts about the lives and cultures of people around the world, from a European perspective. This was also a time when Britain became a global power and grew wealthy. Here, within the British Museum, it is possible to catch a small glimpse of the eighteenth-century scientific process of making knowledge; which involved observation and classification, elements of society that are arguably often taken for granted today. The Age of Enlightenment was characterised by the rise of new sciences, faith in reason and expanding trade. In 1735, the Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus revolutionised the way plants, animals and other objects from the natural world were named and classified. Enlightenment scholars attempted to dispel this by studying the ancient and modern religions they encountered. Kim Sloan (ed. As a historian, I am wary to say that it is an absolute replica of a cabinet of curiosity, as this would be a hard challenge to achieve. Some objects in this collection feature on the audio description guide, available on. British Museum. However, to explore the objects that eighteenth-century contemporaries deemed worthy of study, and the way the Gallery deviates from modern expectations of a museum, creates the nearest possible experience to a cabinet of curiosity (the only other option is to create your own time machine!). This became the standard against which to measure all art and led, in late 18th-century Britain, to a classical revival in architecture and the decorative arts. Published to accompany the British Museum exhibition Tantra: enlightenment to revolution explores the radical philosophy that transformed the religious, cultural and political landscape of India and beyond. The Enlightenment Gallery at the British Museum in London (founded in 1753), represents an eighteenth-century cabinet of curiosity. George III was also keenly interested in the navy, navigation and scientific discoveries and collected instruments and working models. The Enlightenment Gallery - Room 1 of the British Museum laid out as the study of a collector during the age of Enlightenment The Enlightenment Gallery is divided into seven sections that explore the seven major new disciplines of The beautiful archaic setting and architecture of the room creates a sense of time-travel: The King’s Library provides a dramatic contrast to the modern feel of the rest of the building, with its rich oak and mahogany floors and classical architectural features. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Sir Hans Sloane's collection, with several additional libraries and collections, became the foundation of the British Museum, which was established on 7 June 1753 by an Act of Parliament. The British Museum recently re-displayed a bust of its slave-owning founding father Hans Sloane in the Enlightenment Gallery. It was fairly easy to learn about medieval times because many of these objects had survived, including religious artefacts, armour, books and buildings. 今回は、イギリスロンドンにある「大英博物館British Museum」の潜入レポート!ロンドンには無料で入れるミュージアムやギャラリーが多数存在しますが、この大英博物館もその一つです。世界中から集まった数百万点ものコレクションが無料で見ら 50+ videos Play all Mix - Flashmob of Tallis' Spem in Alium - Enlightenment Gallery - British Museum - 26 June 2011 YouTube Gregorio Allegri: Miserere - Duration: 12:43. These men studied each other's collections to learn about the 'progress' of art, from 'primitive' beginnings in early civilisations to what they considered to be the height of artistic achievement – the sculpture and architecture of classical Greece. Peer into the display cases that line the walls to find a fascinating and eclectic collection that inspired an age. Today, it still has a gallery called the Enlightenment Galley, devoted to telling the story of the Enlightenment by displaying objects that Enlightenment figures collected, analysed, and donated to the museum. Many of these original specimens are included in the exhibition, as well as a number of fossils. This one day course was be run by the City Lit on Saturday 17th Novemebr 2012. From the late 16th century onwards, Britain was one of the main participants in the transatlantic slave trade along with other European countries, transporting people against their will from West Africa to work on plantations in the Americas, then bringing goods and wealth back to Europe. Enlightenment architectures: The reconstruction of Sir Hans Sloane’s cabinets of ‘Miscellanies’ By Lucy Stagg, on 9 December 2020 UCLDH Director, Dr Julianne Nyhan and Dr Kim Sloan , Francis Finlay Curator of the Enlightenment Gallery at the British Museum, have recently had an article published by the OUP Journal of the History of Collections. This gallery does not have many labels. In the 18th century, the collections were divided into 'Natural and Artificial Rarities' – objects found in nature or made by people. Everything gathered in the 18th century had to be classified and organised so that it could be more easily understood and used. The Enlightenment led to a fevered interest in deciphering the mysterious forms of Egyptian hieroglyphs and the cuneiform inscriptions found in lands described in the Bible as well as early forms of Sanskrit in India. While Enlightenment thinking and collections provided the foundations for much of our present understanding of the history of human cultural achievement, they also tended to tell that story from a predominantly European … Explore the grandeur of the Enlightenment gallery. The Enlightenment was a period of intense activity devoted to discovery and learning about the natural world, the past and other civilizations. A selection from the extensive collection of Western graphic art in prints and drawings at the British Museum. According to the pamphlet that was readily offered at each entrance to this gallery, the Enlightenment room was finished in 1828 by Robert Smirke, an English architect, for displaying King George III’s library (The British Museum, 2015). This resource is temporarily unavailable during the Museum's phased reopening. MATERIAL TURNS IN BRITISH HISTORY: III. 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