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The British Museum

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by Ashleigh Meikle (subscribe)
Writer, student, traveller.
Published May 20th 2012
One of my favourite places in London is the world renowned British Museum. I have never visited anything quite like it in the Southern Hemisphere, and have a rather large hankering to return to it, as I return each year to Hogwarts through the magic of Harry Potter. As an ancient historian, I am forever exploring websites of museums and their artefacts and getting to the few museums in Sydney with antiquities from Greece, Rome and Egypt whenever the opportunity allows. Like the many books I have read, these places whisk me off to a place of wisdom, magic, multiple gods and goddesses and off to far flung places that I have only ever dreamt of.

Standing out the Greek temple inspired front of the Museum, I can clearly see the twelve Olympians proudly bearing down upon the mere mortals they have messed with for thousands of years.

Upon entering, marble greets me with an echo and I stop, and just take in the immensity of the large museum that I have been anticipating entering for many a year, and where I am now yearning to go back. There is something mysterious that happens when you enter the museum, and it is this mysteriousness that finds its away into you and silences you just for a moment whilst you collect your thoughts.

In the Egyptian antiquities section, I find what I have been waiting and waiting to see: the Rosetta Stone. Like Mecca for Muslims, this is my pilgrimage. It means so much for ancient history in Egypt during the Ptolemaic age. Standing before the stone, I am in awe. It is a thing a beauty, despite its flaws around the edges. It is of great interest to all interested in Egypt. Having journeyed so far to see it, all the way from Sydney, I savoured every moment.

The rest of the Egyptian room is filled with statuary of gods, scarab beetles and sarcophagi.

The Greek and Roman area is just as impressive, though many of the objects are more than likely mostly Roman, as the only records of Greek artefacts are literary.

The British Museum is a magical and mysterious place and holds much more than Egyptian, Greek and Roman antiquities, I unfortunately did not have the time to peruse the entire museum but urge my fellow travellers to do so upon their foray into the age old and famous museum. It is well worth the visit.
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Why? To experience history
Where: The British Museum Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG, United Kingdom
Cost: Free
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