How can you not like the British Museum?
As far as museums go, I love staring at paintings (thus my permanent affection for the National Galleries in London and DC, the Phillips Collection in DC, and the Isabella Stewart Gardiner Museum in Boston). However, I love going into the British Musuem and looking into a case at some ancient old thing, and thinking about how funny it is that it is now trapped under glass and made into a spectacle.
The reason why (or at least one of many reasons why) we should find old things so fascinating, mysterious and dare I say, a little spooky is because they are a kind of ghostly voice of the past — long after the organic matter has decayed away, the objects remain, a sort of cosmic I was here message from past civilizations to the current ones.
I’m very spoiled right now, because the British Museum is literally a five minute walk from my flat. So off I went for a quick poke around two galleries (I almost never have the stamina to spend more than 30 minutes at a time in a museum. And why not? Since they are close by and free admission?)
It’s hard to miss the Rosetta Stone: it’s the big thing with a billion people lurking about it smack dab through the entrance of the museum.
I skipped the Elgin Marbles in the Classical World wing and instead checked out some Assyrian wall carvings of a lion hunt.
Then I had to stop by my favorite exhibit — the clock room. (I really have no idea why I find this room so fascinating, but I love seeing the progression of time pieces through the centuries).