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Modern Museums - Essay Example

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Summary
The word museum comes from the Greek word mouseion. In ancient Greece, the mouseion was the temple of the Muses, the goddesses of arts and sciences. In the 200's B.C., the word was used for a library and research area in Alexandria, Egypt. Museum is a place where a collection of objects illustrating science, art, history, or other subjects is kept and displayed…
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Modern Museums
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Modern Museums

Download file to see previous pages... A museum collects, cares for, and researches the objects it displays. It also keeps a study collection of un-displayed objects. These objects are sometimes called artifacts and are often studied by students and researchers.
These Museums preserve and exhibit paintings, sculpture, and other works of art. The collections of some art museums include work from many periods. Famous museums of this type include the Louvre in Paris and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Some museums specialize in artworks of one period. For example, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City displays works created since the late 1800's. Other museums exhibit only one type of art. The Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico, for example, specializes in folk art from around the world.
They illustrate the life and events of the past. Their collections include documents, furniture, tools, and other materials. Many cities and states have historical societies that operate history museums. Most of these museums have exhibits on local history.4
Other types of history museums include living history museums. Museums of this type include living history farms, historic houses, and historic villages. These museums show how people lived or worked during a certain period. On living history farms, workers demonstrate how crops were planted and harvested in earlier times. Historic houses, such as Mount Vernon, George Washington's home near Alexandria, Virginia, have been restored to their original condition and are open to the public. Williamsburg, a historic village in Virginia, has restored and reconstructed buildings that date from the 1700's. In this village, costumed interpreters demonstrate how early colonists performed such tasks as cooking, making shoes, and printing newspapers.5
Science Museums
Such museums have exhibits on the natural sciences and technology. Museums of natural history exhibit displays of animals, fossils, plants, rocks, and other objects and organisms found in nature. Most of them, including the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., have exhibits on ecology and the evolution of human beings. Many museums of natural history have special exhibits on dinosaurs and other topics.6
History and Origin of Museums
Early Stage of Museums
The modern public art museum owes its origins to the systematic ordering of objects that resulted from Enlightenment efforts to classify and make accessible various branches of human knowledge. The art museum's foundation, however, reflects a more fundamental attitude in Western culture, the tendency of separating certain artifacts from others to give those artifacts special reverence, especially for their aesthetic value.7 The Greek word mouseion was originally applied to a sanctuary dedicated to the muses of Greek mythology. While it soon became known ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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