Because I studied abroad in Scotland during my college days, folks keep asking me if I was going back to Edinburgh to reunite with some faculty members or friends I’d met in 2013. (They underestimate how much of an extreme hermit I was while on my semester exchange.)
The best buddies I made during my first time in Edinburgh all live in the same place, which makes visiting convenient! They also all happen to be either fossils, ancient Celtic art objects, or other curiosities on view at the National Museum of Scotland. Oh, the company I keep!
The National Museum of Scotland is an amalgamation of a natural history/science museum and a… well, just good ol’ human history museum, two grand institutions united in the recent past to form the Pangaea of museums.
Because kids love dinosaurs, the natural history side is usually a lot more popular. My favorite section, however, is the incredible collection of Celtic art, spanning everything from pre-Roman Norse-influenced items to Hiberno-Saxon objects. Check out this old extant example of runic script!
At the same time, I wasn’t going to be staying away from the collection of early modern telescopes and celestial navigation aids for too long…
…and it’s no secret that I too am rather fond of dinosaurs.
Other highlights include a surprisingly large collection of Polynesian art (it made me so homesick to see Hawaiian objects!), exhibits on sound and global musical instruments, and a three-story wunderkammer-style display of marine (and some terrestrial) animal specimens. All of those were difficult to photograph in low gallery light, alas–so I will leave you with this remarkably photogenic toothed whale detail!