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British Musuem

February 9th, 2016 Leave a comment Go to comments

On a sunny and cold day in London, I dragged myself to the British Museum. I should really have gone before. I've been to London a couple of times and I remember in our History class in  Ateneo de Naga is that a lot of cool stuff are in the British Museum; they weren't wrong. 




One of the most photographed features of the British Museum is the actual design of the building. It's airy, it allows the sun to shine and it's just really cool. 


The Elgin Marbles

The story - if I can remember well - is that the British ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Lord Elgin saw the state of Parthenon and it's designs. To save it from further deterioration he procured the marbles with the agreement of the authorities of the day (Greece was under the Ottoman Empire)
Some Greek nationalist have been asking to bring it back - purely on moral arguments as legally it was acquired will full consent.


The British Museum has been open to lending the display to Athens; the rest of the sculptures are in Athens, Germany, Denmark and France. The best bits are in the British Museum - Lord Elgin had first dibs. :)
However, Athens does not believe the British Museum has the right to them so cannot guarantee that they will come back. So, no.


 One of the most remarkable thing here is that you can view the marbles close up. Two thousand years ago, old Athenians would have to look up and just catch a glimpse of the marble unable to marvel at the beauty of its details.







The Nereid Monument







A lot of building have been influenced by the Ionic design showcased in the Nereid Monument.











 The Middle East and the Flood tablet

I remember memorizing what the name of the oldest epic - Gilgamesh. What they missed out, probably cause it's a catholic school, is how it mirrors the flood Story.




 I've refreshed my knowledge of Gilgamesh and it's surreal how it mirrors the Bible's flood story. Although, in this case it's polytheistic, the ark builder tricked his fellow villagers to help him and the reason for the flood was arbitrary. Everything else is spot on. There was a man who was warned by a god about a flood, he brought a pair of every animal, released birds to see if there was dry land and lived really long after the flood subsided. The main god in Gilgamesh also swore not to destroy humanity (again).


A very old grandfather of Google Map.
We've heard of the Great library of Alexandra but not of King Ashurbanipal's









The Egyptian Exhibit


The Egyptian exhibit is one of the more popular feature. It featured the Rosetta stone which a lot of people were taking pictures and selfies which was useless I thought. I didn't get a photo as it was encased in glass and the reflection is more visible than the Hieroglyphics. 


In a lot of ways the Egyptian kings mirror our local politician. They make grandiose projects to commemorate themselves. Also, like our politicians they put their names all  over their projects and is not above putting their names on top of old incumbents.  
A tomb of high priest.

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