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Top 10 Highlights of my second trip to the British Museum

Sometimes it takes a second glance for some people to let the information sink it. Such was my experience on my second visit to the British Museum. My first trip was short and sweet when a long-lost friend met me in London and showed me the place like a professional tour guide. Like the start of a good novel, the first trip made me go back for the second visit. This time I spent nearly the whole day inside and took it slow but still, I only managed to see half. That means I will have to go back for a third visit.

The highlights contained here are from Ancient Egypt, Greece, and the Middle East sections. In order to make the most of it, I paid for an audio guide.

The top 10 highlights of my 2nd trip to the British Museum

ancient-egypt

1. King-List: Egyptian Hall of Fame

king-list

This panel shows the Egyptian kings from the first Pharaoh down the line. Hatshepsut was omitted because she was a queen who ruled as king. Queens were deemed unimportant. There were four other kings omitted in the list because they were associated with the heretic Amarna Period.

2. King Amenhoteps Fist

king-amenhotep

The head and the left arm are whats left of the statue. Amenhotep was one of the four kings omitted in the King-list.

Why not Rameses? Well, hes got everybodys attention; but I have my own preference.

3. Rosetta Stone

Rosetta Stone British Museum

The most popular exhibit in the British Museum, the Rosetta Stone is considered the key to unraveling the mystery of the hieroglyphs and to understanding the inscriptions on the displays found in many sections of the museum.

greece

4. Elgin Marbles

elgin-marbles-British-museum

When these marbles from the Parthenon was first shown to the public, John Keats was among the earliest visitors.

5. The Birth of Athena

The sculptures on the east pediment of the Parthenon show the birth of the goddess Athena from the head of her father Zeus. From the left was Poseidon on a horse rising from the sea which represents the dawn, the time Athena was born. While all the other sculptures lost the heads, Dionysius has not, and hes the only one with his back towards the scene, seemingly unaffected by the event.

6. Goddess Iris

goddess-iris

An excerpt from the audio gives the best description of this sculpture.

This is the spirit of the air and motive that runs through the whole of the body
and drapery speed in the resilience of the body, in the tension of the legs and in the clothing
Forced into a series of ripples on the right thigh, pressed flat against the body itself,
and flattering away at the edges as the air streams through it.
Every single fold speaks the action of the wind.

7. A centaur attacking a young boy

young-boy-attacked-by-centaur

A 5-minute film showed the reconstruction of this sculpture. Through the help of a 3D scan of the heads (which are in Denmark Museum) and a drawing of the sculpture showing the whole picture, they managed to restore it in 3D as seen in the image below.

young-boy-attacked-by-a-centaur-reconstructed

8. Pottery and painting by Ezekiasachiles-and-pentheselia-queen-of-amazon

This wine jar shows Achilles plunging his spear into the neck of Penthesileia, Queen of Amazon. When he realised who the warrior was, Achilles fell in love with his victim but it was too late to save Penthesileia from death.

middle-east

9. Assyrian Gate

assyrian-door

The bronze braces on the massive doors and the two heads with animal body contain arts in minute details.

10. Royal Lion Hunting King Lachish


Divided into layers not taller than 6, this panel showing King Lachish on his lion hunting, displays the best of Assyrian art and craftsmanship. The tiny details demonstrate a painstaking job done by the carver.

The audio guide cost £5 but it was well worth it. You can even have the highlights of your tour emailed to you. Unfortunately, my audio kit ran out of battery before I could register my email address.

Have you been to the British Museum? Whats your favourite section or exhibit?

Please share your thoughts below.

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{ 13 comments add one }
  • Sarah Stierch October 22, 2016, 7:31 am

    One of the finest museums in the world and controversial. Never ceases to amaze me how they collected all of these objects! But, many would probably be destroyed, too. (Im a former museum curator, so I have my opinions). Always love to see what favorites are the Rosetta Stone is quite amazing!
    Sarah Stierch recently postedMission Dolores, San Francisco, CAMy Profile

    • Jemina Sentina October 22, 2016, 7:46 am

      Hi Sarah, I remember my first reaction upon seeing the massive artifacts especially from Assyria was How in the world did they manage to transport all of these?

  • Alice October 16, 2016, 1:09 pm

    Ive been two times to the British Museum, like you ! First as a tourist I took my time and looked around, and then I specially came from Paris to see the Viking exhibition for my studies. My favorite section is still the Enlightenment Gallery but Im very fond of old Egyptian and Antique history so I loved that you showed these !! Thanks !

  • Miss Happyfeet October 7, 2016, 9:50 pm

    I am not a museum person, but visiting a museum once in a while is fun, especially LOVE archeology. Thanks for the list, they look like some great place to actually learn something!
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  • Gypsycouple October 5, 2016, 9:37 am

    To be honest we are not big fans of museums in general. However the exhibits here looks quite intriguing (Ancient Egypt is indeed quite fascinating) and might just be able to draw us in for a look 🙂

  • Lindsay October 5, 2016, 4:22 am

    I used to live in the UK, but never made it to the British Museum (shame on me!). Im glad you are willing to go back several times so you can enjoy yourself and take it all in bit-by-bit. When we visited the Louvre, we were there for 6-7hr and barely made a dent!

    Im definitely in to Ancient Egypt, so that display would be right up my alley! Thanks for sharing 😉
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  • Paul October 3, 2016, 4:24 pm

    We have also only had one short and sweet trip to the British museum and would love to experience it again and take our time there. There are so many incredible things to see there that it would be top of our list next time were in London!
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  • Yenor October 3, 2016, 3:03 pm

    Oh I love this!Ancient museums like this are my favourite! Very interesting to read, will have to put this on my to-do list. Thanks 🙂

  • Carmen's Luxury Travel October 3, 2016, 6:48 am

    Okay, youve inspired me to visit a second time! I loved my first visit to the British Museum but definitely didnt see it all. Great post, thanks for sharing 🙂
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  • Kerri October 3, 2016, 3:27 am

    The British museums are incredible. I too love the Egyptian history. There is something about Egypt that screams history and museums to be and its such an interesting past. Thanks for all the highlights.
    Kerri recently postedLes Ombres: a great restaurant with an epic view of the Eiffel TowerMy Profile

  • Karla at GlobalETA October 3, 2016, 2:23 am

    I have a layover in London on Saturday and Ive never been there before. So excited, even though we only have like 4-5 hours. Not sure that we will get to the museum this time but some day!

  • Lisa October 2, 2016, 10:20 pm

    This one is on my must visit list! Would love to see all the ancient Egypt displays. Such a fascinating museum, cant wait to see it (for a couple of days Im sure)!
    Lisa recently postedBarrel Run Crossing Winery in OhioMy Profile

  • Llamateurs October 2, 2016, 9:39 pm

    Egyptian Hall of fame looks interesting maybe because I was in Egypt for 3 years when I was a child and my sentiment is taking over 🙂 Anyway, I need to visit some museum now, havent been to any for ages!

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