Ancient Egyptian mummies, shark fossils and paintings by famous European masters attract history, nature and art lovers to Scotland’s oldest public museum.
Opened in 1807, The Hunterian is the oldest public museum in Scotland. Admire some of the million or so artifacts on display, browse masterpieces by the Dutch painter Rembrandt and see how the celebrated local architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh lived.
Dr. William Hunter bestowed his private collection to the University of Glasgow in 1783. This means the collection was already largely in place and predates the museum. These days the museum has various exhibition buildings: the Hunterian Museum, Hunterian Art Gallery and Mackintosh House, Zoology Museum, and Anatomy Museum. Getting around is easy as the buildings are closely grouped on the grounds of the University of Glasgow.
Find treasured archaeological relics from Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome in the Hunterian Museum. Among these is the Lady Shep-en-Hor, the mummy of an Egyptian woman who died around 600 B.C. Check out the Bearsden Shark fossils found in a Glasgow stream by a local man walking his dog. See remnants of the Antoine Wall, a Roman wall that once ran from the east to west coast of Scotland.
Art lovers will appreciate the collection of works by Old Masters in the Art Gallery. Look for Chardin’s A Lady Making Tea, and The Entombment by Rembrandt.
The Mackintosh House features original furniture and woodwork from the former house of Glaswegian architect Charles Mackintosh and his wife Margaret MacDonald.
Children will especially enjoy the animal displays in the Zoology Museum. Find live snakes and lizards as well as marsupials and minuscule marine life. If you are interested in the human body, make an appointment to see displays of our amazing inner mechanisms in the Anatomy Museum.
The Hunterian is a 10-minute drive from the city center. Free on-campus parking is available on weekends and public buses stop close to the museum entrance. Check the museum’s official website for the opening hours for each hall.