The Natural History Museum, Oxford

The Museum building was started in the mid 19th century to house
natural history specimens from the Ashmolean Museum and the University.

It was built in the neo-Gothic style – the inside of the museum has an extensive glass roof supported by cast iron columns and resembles nothing so much as a large and ornate Victorian greenhouse. With its many architectural flourishes the building competes for your attention with the many exhibits. It still has the feel of a Victorian museum – which is probably a good thing – nothing against modern audio-visual presentations, but sometimes it seems that ‘old fashioned’ museums are now themselves an endangered species.

If you are in an adventurous mood you can also visit the Pitt-Rivers Museum, which is housed behind the Natural History Museum. The Pitt-River’s is, while still extraordinary, is darker and quite spooky.

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