With free entry, this extraordinary collection is accessible to all budgets and appeals to all ages.
Inside, you will see the Elgin Marbles that once stood atop the Acroplis in Athens. The Greek government continue to seek their return, but they remain a drawcard here, along with treasures of ancient Egypt, Rome and other early civilisations.
I fell in love with the British museum, whilst living in London, some twenty years ago, spending a full two weeks exploring its many treasures. The displays have been revamped and are better lit, though much more of the collection is now behind glass, groupings of objects and information about the civilisations, as well as dynasties and periods are now much better. So extensive is the collection, that it is easy to get lost and lose track of sections you have missed. Allow a minimum of a full day, if you have limited time in London, with a couple of weeks, allow for return visits. I find there is so much there that I need to break my concentration and refresh a little at the atmospheric Museum Tavern directly opposite on the corner.
Amongst my very favourite items are the Egyptian cat mummies but the entire Egypt collection truly captivated my imagination and awe then and continues to to this day. Here, now protected by glass, you will see the Rosetta stone, which unlocked the mystery of Egyptian hyroglyphics forever, given the information is conveyed also in ancient Greek and another language. Understanding the hyroglyphics, of course unleashed a wealth of previously untapped information to historians. Personally, I love the colours the Egyptians employed, with the vivid whites, golds, burnt oranges and azure blues, these colours remain vibrantly glorious tiny rendering of animals and more amidst the information they convey. The symentry and stylisation of objects is exquisite, with the tiny pieces being at least as fascinating as the bigger items such as mummies and sculptures.
The Greek and Roman sections are equally extensive and breath-taking, with the Elgin Marbles worthy of considerable time in their own right. Sculptures and artefacts from Babylon, Persia and Hitite cultures are equally captivating.
My latest visit, gave me a new appreciation of items collected from within the British Isles, including Roman and Viking objects.
I longed for more time to do sections over the course of a day, rather than just gain an overview as I did this time.
Returning to The British Museum, was like revisiting an old friend. There were some changes, but their core was as ever, multifaceted and engaging. I valued every moment I could spend in their presence.
The cultural heritage contained within its walls belong not just to Britain, but to humanity. They connect us to our collective heritage and enrich us in our knowledge of what it is to be human!