The History of Science Museum in Broad Street, Oxford, England, holds a leading collection of scientific instruments from Middle Ages to the 19th century. The museum building is also known as the Old Ashmolean Building to distinguish it from the newer Ashmolean Museum building completed in 1894. The museum was built in 1683, and it is the world's oldest surviving purpose-built museum.
Built in 1683 to house Elias Ashmole's collection, the building was the world's first purpose-built museum building and was also open to the public. The original concept of the museum was to institutionalize the new learning about nature that appeared in the 17th century and experiments concerning natural philosophy were undertaken in a chemical laboratory in the basement, while lectures and demonstration took place in the School of Natural History, on the middle floor. Ashmole's collection was expanded to include a broad range of activities associated with the history of natural knowledge. In 1924, Lewis Evans donated his collection of historic scientific instruments, creating the Lewis Evans Collection. In 1935, with more donations, the museum's name was changed to the Museum of the History of Science. In 2018, the museum was renamed the History of Science Museum.
|Tuesday||12:00 – 5:00 PM|
|Wednesday||12:00 – 5:00 PM|
|Thursday||12:00 – 5:00 PM|
|Friday||12:00 – 5:00 PM|
|Saturday||12:00 – 5:00 PM|
|Sunday||12:00 – 5:00 PM|
Julia Crane | Dec 16, 2017
Really interesting, but could be more interactive for the younger folk. One volunteer tried to engage us in a long riddle that I thought would lead us to some really interesting fact. The answer to the riddle was something about an 80s band and I still don't really get how it applied to either History or Science...
Vicki Papageorgiou | Dec 25, 2017
The exhibits are a bit crammed as there are a lot and on the other hand there is not enough space. Yet, it is a lovely museum with some interesting exhibits like Einstein's board from his first lecture in Oxford University. Worth the visit
Richard Venn | Dec 6, 2017
They've got some great exhibits. Atmospheric surroundings. More explanation of how things work would be good, but soave is obviously limited. A little gem.
Dan Q | Oct 25, 2017
My favourite Oxford museum! Fascinating collections and imaginative exhibitions. Space is a little tight (especially when the tourists are out and about) and the disabled access lift seems to be broken more often than not, but so long as you can manage the stairs this Oxford gem promises to show you more about how science USED to be done than you ever thought possible.
Spookssga | Dec 23, 2017
First time I've been here. Its small in comparison to other museums I've been to, but it does have quite a few interesting items.
Gavin Saunders | Apr 28, 2018
Wonderful, if small, museum. Full of amazing objects. Do use the audio guide, which you access on your phone
Bob Anderson | May 7, 2018
Lovely little museum next door to the Sheldonian in the heart of Oxford. A must see for science geeks with enthusiastic and friendly staff. Totally unphased by the birds of foreign visitors!
Richard Venn | Mar 11, 2018
They've got some great exhibits. Atmospheric surroundings. More explanation of how things work would be good, but space is obviously limited. A little gem.
Peter Royle | May 2, 2018
Definitely worth a couple of hours of your time. Some great exhibits, well presented.
Kev Hall | May 1, 2018
Really interesting artifacts from the world of science. Very educational
Katia Schoenaker | May 23, 2018
Nice museum. The first ever in Britain. More than 300 years. There are items for chemistry, astronomy, physics, math and even an ancient room for anatomy studies. On one wall hangs a blackboard with Einstein's equation written by himself when he visited Oxford.
Piers de Winter | May 20, 2018
Good for space related learning and exploration. Took five nephews under seven, had a great time. At no time were they bored, so that has to be special.
Veselina Petrova | Jun 7, 2018
Must see the chalk board on which Einstein explains his theories. Entrance is free. The museum is small and full of interesting objects from various scientific fields
Alan Smith | Jun 14, 2018
Some interesting stuff though quite small. Good app to download and make the visit more interactive
John Kendal | May 18, 2018
If you have an interest in scientific instruments from the last 400 years then a worthwhile stop on your tour of Oxford. Very well organised exhibits and top quality staff.
Bruce Rippee | Jul 22, 2018
Make sure you budget an appropriate amount of time. This is an amazing place and each exhibit is cooler than the last one. I had to rush through in an hour and wished I would have had 4 hours.
Mister Ed | Jul 19, 2018
Decent and interesting museum that specialises in the evolution of science in particular the varied methods and instruments used. There is a lift which is to the side of the building but it's for wheelchair users, if you have a buggy you have to carry it up the steps and leave it in the foyer. There is also no toilet, and it's quite small, with 3 floors including a basement and first floor. The first floor is only open until 1.30pm when I went so you should go early. It's fascinating for those interested in science, not good for young kids who were bored. It's interesting because it shows important lab equipment, the evolution of microscopes, telescopes, maps, globes, naval measuring instruments, and lots more. There are pieces from Asia and the Middle East which are very interesting. So basically a lot of brass scientific equipment, chemistry glassware, original historical scientific equipment, and lots more.
Chris Kepert | Jul 5, 2018
Since interesting and beautiful objects of some scientific significance. Worth checking out if you're in the area with time to kill. Will be lost on people without an interest in science or on young children.
Paul G | Jul 13, 2018
Nice spot, great collection that focuses on instruments and telescopes. The shame of it is that all the pieces seem like knick knacks once context is removed. I think if I were more invested in the subject, I would have stayed longer, but I enjoyed wandering around.
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