Prague National Museum
The new building of the National Museum in Prague has become one of the city’s unique modern buildings. It is located on a street next to the old National Museum and can be easily reached by getting off at the Muzeum metro stop.
Prague National Museum is one of the largest and most comprehensive museums I have ever visited. As we will talk about in a bit more detail, there are historical objects in every area and it is a very informative museum. I don’t know what the previous museum was like, but the new one is quite satisfying.
In the archaeology rooms of the museum, we see a lot of bones and fossils. A display case filled with human skulls looks unusual. Animal bones are also on display, but the fossils of frogs and fish are the most interesting.
There are many informative panels about nature. The circulation of natural life within itself is explained. The rulers of the world such as crocodiles and lions are mentioned. While talking about these, the skeletons of animals are also exhibited.
There are also human skeletons in the museum. Some of them were buried in the usual way, while others were cremated and preserved, as according to some beliefs they should be cremated after death. The remains of a posthumously cremated person from the Early Roman Period (1st century AD) can also be seen.
You can also see the mummified body of a 110-year-old Egyptian child from 5 BC and a mummified body from 1784 BC.
The anatomy section of the museum is also very interesting. The first section introduces the pioneers of anatomy and the basic organs of our body. In the following sections, more special things are exhibited. For example, a woman’s skeleton from the 19th century is in the showcase, but it shows in a good way what osteoporosis caused by vitamin D deficiency will cause, how the bones will bend.
We are in an episode that shows what diseases can lead to if precautions are not taken. We can see the effects of tuberculosis on the head of a person who died from tuberculosis, a disease that spreads rapidly throughout the body. In the same way, visitors are shown what an ulcer in the 19th century could become, or what a brain tumor can do to a human skull. It is quite astonishing to see the effects of so many diseases.
The museum also exhibits some things related to murders and suicides. For example, there are skulls of people who lost their lives for different reasons, such as skulls with bullets, skulls with axes or knives, skulls that fell on their heads from the second floor.
Suicide methods and important suicide cases are also mentioned in the museum. The deaths of famous names such as famous writer Stefan Zweig, Virginia Woolf, singer Kurt Cobain are mentioned. Materials used in suicides are also among the exhibits.
The next room is about death rituals. It talks about the monuments and sarcophagus tombs built for deaths in ancient Greece or Rome. We also see the rituals of those who believed in cremation and the containers where the ashes were kept after cremation.
All the rooms above are located on the ground floor of the museum. There are also some places to visit on the upper floors of the museum. The first floor is an exhibition hall. Famous artists, philosophers, writers and musicians are presented here. Personal belongings of these people are also on display.
A different point of the museum is an area where you can travel through the world of animals that live or used to live on our planet, but are now extinct.
The museum has grown day by day with the donations of many people who are interested in the animal kingdom and dedicated to this work. Seeing dozens of species together really puts you in a different mood. Eventually we find ourselves in an environment similar to Noah’s ark. It is possible to see every animal here.
Old National Museum
The museum’s previous location was the large and imposing building on Wenceslas Square next door. This building was also built in 1890. The inside of the building is like a majestic palace, but due to the restoration, it has not been possible to enter since 2011. The building is scheduled to open in 2018.
In front of the building is Wenceslas Square and in the center of the square is a huge monument. The monument is the St. Wenceslas Monument, created by Josef Vaclav Myslbek in 1912. On the horse is the 10th century Bohemian duke Wenceslas, and next to him are statues depicting Czech saints.
There is also a monument in Wenceslas Square, on the sidewalk between the statue of St. Wenceslas and the former national museum. During the Prague Spring, when Russia invaded Czechoslovakia, Jan Palach, a university student, set himself on fire here in protest against the invasion. Afterwards, a monument was erected to remember him.
The National Museum is really a museum with very important artifacts. It should be at the top of the list of places to visit in Prague. I liked it very much, both its variety and its content.