The University of Glasgow is amongst the oldest in the UK, and nestled right in its heart lies the Hunterian Museum, the oldest public museum in Scotland. First opened in 1807, the collection now sprawls across several buildings on campus, with the bulk of the museum exhibits residing in the splendid neo-gothic George Gilbert Scott building.
As the museum was founded at the bequest of an anatomist, biological specimens form a large part of the collection. Exotic insects, dinosaur bones, and medical oddities preserved in jars (not for the squeamish) abound. However, William Hunter was a keen collector of all manner of oddments, and the collection includes many ancient coins, rare minerals and crystals, scientific and medical instruments, books, manuscripts and items of miscellaneous interest. New exhibit showcases many Roman artifacts recovered from the remains of the Antonine wall, a fortification which once stretched across Scotland.
The museum is easily accessible by lift (actually much easier than finding the way through Glasgow’s labyrinthine campus) from the main entrance to the University. Many of the displays are interactive, particularly those on the balcony overlooking the main hall, and there’s plenty to keep children interested. A recent change to opening hours means the museum is now open Saturday and Sunday and closed on Mondays.
Now on display: an exhibition of four works by Turner Prize-nominee Lucy Skaer.
There is now a Hunterian Museum iPhone App.
Check out this article for more info on Glasgow museums.