Gallery of Mineralogy and Geology

Paris, France

Gallery of Mineralogy and Geology

The Gallery of Mineralogy and Geology (in French, galerie de Min茅ralogie et de G茅ologie) is a part of the French National Museum of Natural History (Mus茅um national d'histoire naturelle, MNHN). It is situated in the Jardin des plantes ('Garden of the Plants') in Paris near the gare d'Austerlitz train station. The gallery displays a collection of crystals, gemstones and minerals parmi les plus anciennes et les plus prestigieuses du monde ('among the oldest and the most prestigious in the world').

The collection is older than the building. It began in 1625, when minerals with medicinal properties were deposited in le droguier du roi ('the royal drug cabinet'). Thereafter, the droguier and its minerals were moved to the Jardin royal des plantes m茅dicinales ('Royal Garden of the Medicinal Plants'), founded in 1635 under the rule of Louis XIII. The Jardin royal des plantes m茅dicinales, as a location, corresponds in the present day to the still existing Jardin des plantes, but as an institution it nowadays corresponds to the French National Museum of Natural History. In 1635, when the Royal Garden was being founded, the mineral collections and the royal drug cabinet were transported to a ch芒teau situated in the same property as the garden itself. In the same year, the so-mentioned ch芒teau was also destined to receive the cabinet du roi (the 'Royal Cabinet of Curiosities'). Later, during the reign of Louis XIV, the mineralogical collection of the cabinet du roi was enriched on the orders of the king and put on public display as of 1745.

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