The Ashmolean Museum
Beaumont Street, Oxford, OX1 2PH
|Save money and beat the queues by booking attractions, tours and things...|
- Recommended for:
- Culture vultures, Families with teenagers, Families with younger children, Seasoned travellers, Singles, Art, Design and architecture, Education, Escaping the crowds, History
Best for Culture - Expert review of The Ashmolean Museum
Founded in 1683 by Elias Ashmole, this was Britain’s first public museum. Over the centuries it acquired the university’s art collection and a world-class collection of archaeological objects. Highlights include the Alfred Jewel, donated in 1718, watercolours by JMW Turner, a huge amount of ancient Greek and Roman statuary given by the Countess of Pomfret in 1755, paintings by Canaletto and Guardi, Guy Fawkes’ lantern, drawings by Leonardo da Vinci, Minoan pottery and a sword said to have been given by the pope to Henry VIII.
The present neo-classical building dates from 1845. It was designed by Charles Cockerell who specialised in splendid 19th-century banks. Cockerell also did the Fitzwilliam in Cambridge. Between 2006 and 2009 the Ashmolean was extensively rebuilt and expanded behind Cockerell’s façade by the architect Rick Mather. It now boasts five floors instead of three, doubling of the display space. Unusually, the revamp has met with much delight.
More information on The Ashmolean Museum:
- Price guide:
- Architectural site, Art gallery, Museum
- Beaumont Street, Oxford, OX1 2PH
- 01865 278 000
- Months open:
- All year round
- Opening times:
- Tue-Sun 10am-6pm; museum closed Mondays (shop open 10am-5pm).
- Free tags / Keywords:
- Pre-Raphaelites, archaeology, JMW Turner