Oxford, England

Museum of the History of Science, Oxford

The Oxford University’s Museum of the History of Science is one of the world’s foremost institutions devoted to the collection and cataloguing of scientific instruments, rare books and manuscripts from medieval times to the early 20th century. Naturally, this is a great place for science buffs of all ages.

Chronicling science since 1924

The Museum was founded in 1924 when Lewis Evans donated his collection of scientific objects and books to the University of Oxford. The collection along with other scientific artifacts of the University was housed in the Old Ashmolean Building where it still remains today.

Vast and rare collection

The museum is home to more than 18000 exhibits and 20000 rare books and manuscripts. They span a gamut of sciences from physics to architecture including chemistry, medicine, photography, microscopy, astronomy and mathematics. You get to see inventive globes, spheres, ornate sundials, octants, quadrants and more from all over the world.

The stars of the museum, however, are Einstein’s blackboard which he used in 1931 while delivering a lecture at the University, the Countess of Westmoreland’s lodestone, Elizabeth I’s astrolabe and George III’s silver microscope besides an astonishing range of clocks and astrolabes.

While a guided tour lasts for about 45 minutes, it is easy to spend hours appreciating a truly unique collection.

Handy Tip

  • You might like to take advantage of a guided tour, every Thursday (02:30 pm and 03:15 pm) and Saturday (12:30 pm and 01:30 pm)