PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PAUL D STEWART / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Fine steel engraving, monotone, by l. Lewitt and Radclyffe of the "British Museum - Zoological Gallery" in "London Interiors" published by Joseph Mead of London (1841). The engraving shows the upper second floor of the British Museum's East Wing as fitted out after 1838. Above the cabinets of stuffed birds and shells was the Museum's collection of portraits. The generally poor level of curation for the British Museum's specimens around this time led naturalist's such as Darwin to leave their collections elsewhere. Things improved in the early 1880's when, under the direction of Sir Richard Owen, the new Natural History Museum was built and the collection migrated to South Kensington.
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