The British Museum is the centerpiece of art and history with its ever-impressive collections sourced from around the world. In fact, the museum is unlike any other considering its vastness and the number of collections that it holds. Amongst this wealth of collections lays some of the greatest treasured artifacts having immense value.
However, these artifacts are largely ignored by the visitors as they strictly adhere to their British Museum guided tour programs and see only the prominent attractions. These rare artifacts are unique in the fact that they are sourced from different regions across the globe. Below are some of the rare artifacts to view in the British Museum.
The Kakiemon Elephants are a rare artifact displayed in the British Museum. Originated during the 17th Century during the Edo period, they were created in Japan and later sold to Holland and Britain. Made of porcelain, the Kakiemon Elephants are incredible in their build and décor. They display the cultural traditions prevalent at that time and the skills of the artisans of the period.
Rock Crystal Skull
Yet another incredible piece of artifact housed in the British Museum is the Rock Crystal Skull. It is believed that this rock originated from around Mexico, although this claim is debated. The British Museum acquired the Rock Crystal Skull from Tiffany and Co. in 1897. Extensive studying of the crystal skull has revealed that they were likely produced in 19th Century Europe.
The Vindolanda Tablets
The Vindolanda Tablets are known as one of the oldest surviving handwritten documents in Britain. These tablets have immense value considering the development of writing in the Britain of the ancient times. It was excavated in 1973 in Northern England and was preserved among the waterlogged regions of an ancient military post belonging to the Roman era.
Mummy of Hornedjitef
The Mummy of Hornedjitef is a rare mummy displayed in the permanent collection of the British Museum. It belonged to a prominent priest that served Temple of Amun at Karnak when Ptolemy III ruled Egypt. The coffin is unique on its own with intricate decoration, attractive collar, distinguishing beard, and the presence of gilding in the inner coffin.
The Becket Casket
The Becket Casket is yet another incredible artifact displayed in the British Museum. The casket holds the remains of Archbishop Thomas Becket, who was murdered in 1170 at the Canterbury Cathedral and later declared a saint. Decorated with Limoges enamel, the casket bears several embossing detailing the life of the saint.