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154854.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:18 am Reply with quote

Molly, can you make that link smaller?

if you type:

[url= ] link [/ url]

...without the spaces, that should do it.


Molly Cule
154861.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:30 am Reply with quote

The dinosaurs were put on 3 islands, the first representing the Paleozoic era, a second, the Mesozoic era, and a third representing the Cenozoic era. The lake was tidal and so the water rose and fell around the dinasaurs bodies. To mark the 'launch' of the models Hawkins - the man who built them - held a dinner on New Years Eve 1853 inside the mould of one of the dinosaurs - the Iguanodon.

154863.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:35 am Reply with quote

More crystal palace stuff here

Molly Cule
154868.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:42 am Reply with quote

Hmm... MatC vs Gaazy - is the great exhibition QI?! Is Gaazy the girl who came to a show last series, the biggest smallest QI fan ever? Or not. Im going to be in trouble if not!

154870.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:44 am Reply with quote

You may be in a bit of trouble, Gaazy is a bloke who presents a welsh-language radio show from Anglesey. I think you're thinking of Dotcom.

Molly Cule
154871.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:46 am Reply with quote

Oops. !

154879.  Thu Mar 08, 2007 7:13 am Reply with quote

eggshaped wrote:
I just remembered, the dinosaurs at Crystal Palace are quite interesting because they are all anatomically incorrect but can't be changed because they're officially grade II listed buildings.

(source for previous post - source for dino fact Bollocks to Alton Towers)

In which case, I surrender - that is very interesting.

156871.  Thu Mar 15, 2007 1:27 pm Reply with quote

InAntwerp, there's a Museum of Newspaper Flops (I've been there). The eccentric owner collects printed boo-boos from all over the globe. No doubt the collection is being replenished constantly...

Molly Cule
166018.  Sat Apr 14, 2007 8:40 am Reply with quote

Glass flowers at Harvard
The biggest tourist attraction at Harvard University is an exhibition of flowers made out of glass. The collection of over 3,000 model flowers attract over 100,000 visitors a year.
The models were commissioned by the first Director of the Harvard Botanical Museum, George Goodale and financed by the Ware family. The flowers replicate tiny details of plant anatomy with amazing detail and were used for teaching botany.
They were made by father and son, the Blaschkas from Dresden. Before the flowers Leopold Blaschka, the father, sold glass eyes. He also made beakers and test tubes. Then he began making models of marine animals – squid, jellyfish and sea anemones which he sold to museums all over the world.

The pair grew American species in their own garden, which they then copied, they also visited the royal gardens of Pillnitz and replicated flowers they found there, later they made trips to the Caribbean for samples. The first shipment of 20 flowers was sent to the U.s in 1887 and father and son carried on making the flowers for the next 5 decades. The plants are known as the Ware Collection and are in the Botanical Museum of Harvard. The models are used for teaching in plant sciences.
There is a series called the ‘rotten fruit’ showing plant diseases. Some of them now have white powdery stuff on their leaves which is glass corrosion.
In 1976 25 models had to be taken to 5th Avenue, NYC for an exhibition, they were driven from Harvard and back in a hearse as this was smoothest ride the curators could find.
Students of medieval history who learn that stained glass window are thicker at the bottom than the top because glass is a liquid and over time, it slowly flows toward the ground and collects at the bottom of the pane are wrong.
"The reason old glass is thicker at the bottom is the way it's made," he continued. "It's what they call 'crown glass.' You blow glass on the end of a long pipe until you have a big bubble, then you burst it and lay it out flat while it's still warm. Just imagine you and me doing that. Rolling it out on a table, trying to keep it warm and roll it flat. It's not going to be perfectly flat. Then you cut it up and give the pieces to the carpenter. If he's logical, he sets it in the window with the thick side on the bottom, it'll stand up while he caulks around it. It's much easier to work with.

166054.  Sat Apr 14, 2007 10:04 am Reply with quote

I love the idea of transporting sick glass flowers in a hearse rather than an ambulance - saves time if they die too I suppose.

167762.  Thu Apr 19, 2007 7:34 am Reply with quote

The British Museum is run on the principle of universal access - in contrast to most museums around the world, for instance, you can simply walk in there, no matter who you are, with no appointment, and ask for a one-to-one encounter with some priceless drawing by Michelangelo, and the staff will go and fetch it for you.

However, in the early days, the idea of public access was rather more rigidly defined. In 1759, would-be visitors had to apply for a ticket from the hall porter, “and even then they were admitted only with the approval of the principal librarian. An early visit to the Museum was a hurried affair, with groups of 15 rushed around by a member of staff, forbidden from stopping and ‘gazing at objects.’”

I do like the idea that ‘gazing at objects’ is unacceptable behaviour in a museum!

A visitor of 1817 complained of never being allowed to stop and look at things, and further that “Our conductor pushed on without minding questions, or unable to answer them, but treating the company to double entendres and witticisms on various subjects in natural history, in a style of vulgarity and impudence.”

So now we know the true origins of QI ...

It was gradually accepted that the public was entitled to see the museum's contents - not least since the place was maintained at public expense. Not everyone was convinced; the principal librarian noted in 1835 (when the universal admission policy was already in force): “People of a higher grade would hardly wish to come to the Museum at the same time with sailors from the dock-yards and girls whom they might bring with them.”

Incidentally, this book mentions that during the Blitz the Museum suffered several direct hits, which “destroyed large parts of the building and several objects that had been kept there as a so-called ‘suicide exhibition.’” I can’t google up any other reference to this phrase, but it sounds interesting.
S: ‘The Museum’ by Rupert Smith (BBC Books, 2007).

167767.  Thu Apr 19, 2007 7:39 am Reply with quote

That's beautiful, and ties in to the fact that one of the things you weren't allowed to do in the Secret Museum of Erotica in Naples was to laugh.

167855.  Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:06 am Reply with quote

You are, however, encouraged across the herbacious border in Amsterdam's Hemp Museum. Apparently.

Molly Cule
171130.  Tue May 01, 2007 5:45 am Reply with quote

Who are the smallest members of staff at the NHM?

Hundreds of flesh eating beetles who are used to strip animal carcasses down to bare bones. The Dermestes maculatus, carrion beetles are better at preserving bone and collagen than chemical cleaning methods.

They live and work in a climate-controlled "bug room" called a dermestarium. They can be kept at 25C, but with high humidity to stop them from eating their own eggs.

In the past, chemical agents such as hydrogen peroxide and carbon tetrachloride were used but these destroy bones and make their molecular information unreadable.

By letting the beetles do the work, the bones and collagen are not changed in any way, allowing scientists to gather information about an animal's age, distribution and feeding patterns.

The beetles are kept under tight security to stop them eating the rest of the museum, they dont much like stuffed animals preferring flesh and roadkill but they will still have a good chomp if you let them.

s - my friend at the NHmuseum and online articles.

173562.  Fri May 11, 2007 8:47 am Reply with quote

Near Saumur, France, there is The Mushroom Museum, where visitors pay to “watch mushrooms grow.”

S: The Vegetarian, Summer 2007


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