Home Celebrity The fascinating history of the world’s 100,000 museums

The fascinating history of the world’s 100,000 museums

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Why did you embark on this colossal undertaking, to retrace a world history of the museum?

Krzysztof Pomian The reason is simple, because there was none. In the early 1970s, as part of my research on collections, I was forced to take an interest in museums. It doesn’t happen every day in the life of a researcher to be confronted with such an imposing and unprecedented subject. With reluctance and resistance, I therefore launched.

We learn that the first museum is the work of a pope in the XVe century…

Pope Sixtus IV comes to power at a time when relations between the Holy See and the city of Rome have been soured by his predecessor. In 1471, he decided to calm the situation by offering the municipality a small collection of antiquities which are in the Lateran Palace. The works are exhibited at the Capitol. The pope is not aware of creating a museum. The word will not be attached to this collection until fifty years later. This invention spread in the XVIe century in Venice with the Statuario pubblico, in Florence with the Uffizi Gallery and in Milan with the Ambrosian Pinacoteca.

“THE MUSEUM, A WORLD HISTORY. VOLUME III: CONQUERING THE WORLD, 1850-2020”, by Krzysztof Pomian. Gallimard, 944 pages, €45. The box with the first two volumes (“From treasure to the museum” and “European anchorage, 1789-1850”), €115.

How does the museum cross the Alps to spread in Europe?

Foreigners who visit Italy, not

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