The British Museum

Great Russell Street, Fitzrovia, WC1B 3DG
The British Museum image
Review Summary from 1 review

Address
Great Russell Street, Fitzrovia, WC1B 3DG

Telephone
020 7323 8000

Category
Museums

Region
Fitzrovia

Nearest Station
Tottenham Court Road (0.26 miles)

Website
https://www.britishmuseum.org/

The British Museum is the world's oldest museum and was founded in 1753. The collection was first started by Hans Sloane, the man responsible for the initiation of the Chelsea Physic Garden. Sloane's collection had soon expanded massively and needed permanent housing.

In 1847 Robert Smirke designed the colonnaded neo-classical building that became the site of the British Museum.

The British Museum has exhibits spanning the last two million years of history.
The interior of the British Museum spans two and a half miles and features more than 60 free to view galleries. Major exhibits include treasures from Egypt, Rome and Greece. A vast collection of Oriental art from Chinese, Indian and Islamic sources. British historical artefacts range from prehistoric examples right through to present day.

There has been a recent return of the Ethnography Collections from the Museum of Mankind. Some of the museums most precious exhibits include the rosetta stone, Egyptian mummies and Mildenhall treasures.

In 1997 the British Library was opened in a purpose built building in St Pancras, and all the books removed from the British Museum Reading Room to be placed there. The opportunity was used to transform the space around the reading room, and London’s first glass covered square - designed by Sir Norman Foster and named the ‘Great Court’ was constructed. At the centre of the Great Court is the magnificent Round Reading Room, now restored, where Karl Marx and George Bernhard Shaw studied. The museum is worth visiting even only for these two design masterpieces.

The British Museum is the most visited attraction in London and admission is free, although expect the usual security screening and bag restrictions.

The British Museum Picture Gallery

The British Museum Picture
The British Museum Picture
The British Museum Picture
The British Museum Picture
The British Museum Picture

Events

Thomas Becket

The British Museum, Great Russell Street, London

Thursday 15th of October 2020 to Sunday 14th of February 2021

Best For

Culture vultures: head to London's best museums and galleries picture

Culture vultures: head to London's best museums and galleries

Way better than an evening in front of TOWIE

The British Museum might not quite have its foot in the present, but if it’s dusty old museums full of history and wonder you want then it will do just fine. There are mummies and they alone make this one of London’s best museums. It is home to Britain’s past treasures and secrets – who knew learning could be so fun!

Best places to spend a rainy day in London picture

Best places to spend a rainy day in London

Prepare for a British summer's day!

The gargantuan British Museum requires more than a day to view all its collections, so there’s plenty to keep all the family entertained during a downpour. One of the world’s greatest attractions, it houses poignant items in the history of mankind such as Egyptian mummies, the Rosetta Stone and the controversial Elgin Marbles.

London's oldest attractions picture

London's oldest attractions

Something for the history-buffs...

Built in 1753, the British Museum is the oldest museum in the world as well as the capital's most popular attraction. The museum originated as a collection of Sir Han's Soane's 'curiosities', which included books, dried plants and stuffed animals, and grew to be the huge medley of items we know today. Within the museum one of the oldest exhibits is a stone chopping tool found in Tanzania, thought to be 2 million years old.

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See the Mummies picture

See the Mummies

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User Reviews

Reviewed by Susie from Surrey
I came here to see the famous roof and that alone was worth the visit; all the wonderful exhibitions and artifacts were a bonus - a wonderful building!

Jul 16, 2014

Reviewed by krunchie frog
The fact that all the things that The British Museum exhibits are free to go and look at is fantastic.

My favorite exhibits, probably like most, are the ancient Egyptian pieces. Colossal statues, mummies, sarcophaguses (sarcophogi?), paintings, carvings, ornaments all dating back to as far as over 4000 years ago is pretty impressive.

However, it's not just about Egypt. I didn't have time to check out everything, there is an awful lot on display. But as it's free, I will be going back soon to finish off my visit.

I got around without one of those electronic guides, but part of me wishes I did pick one up. It's all very well reading the plaques, but sometimes it's easier to follow information when it's being told to you. Next time, I'll also go on one of their free tours.

I recommend a visit to The British Museum to anyone visiting London, but also to those who already live here.

Sep 9, 2008

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