Wednesday, July 3, 2013

London 2: British Museum, National Gallery, St Paul's, and St. Bart's

Today I had a clear plan in mind as I left my hostel.
 I intended to go to the British Museum, the British Library, the National Gallery, and listen to evensong at St Paul's. Then I realized how much time I would want to spend at each location, and reconsidered.
I went to the British Museum first, and cut through Russell Square on my way there. 

The flowers were all in bloom, and the garden was lush and beautiful. Since I got there at ten, there was hardly anyone else there.

Except for this statue, of course...
I got to the British Museum in good time. 

i bypassed the galleries on the first floor, which were horribly crowded. instead I went up to the Japan exhibit.

A replica of Kudda Kannon, a Buddhist savior god. The original is one of Japan's national treasures.

Samurai armor from the Edo period, specially made to frighten.

Noh theatre masks

Mask up kit of a Samurai's wife

The Egypt exhibits had emptied somewhat after that, so I went to see them.

Mummy of a young Roman man

Me next to Egyptian tomb hieroglyphics

I went to the Mesopotamian exhibits next. The thing behind me is a stele with a king at the top.

 The head of Minerva, (Roman, c. 3 AD) from the original 18th century collection.

The Sutton Hoo burial helmet, which was discovered in the remains of a buried ship for a Viking king's funeral.

Me by a Roman sculpture of the muse of comedy, Thalia. She was my favorite sculpture of the Roman works I saw. 

Outside, I wanted to come back for more, but I was hungry, so I departed for my hostel. Then, on to the National Gallery! I got there at about two- thirty, and was amazed by its proximity to Trafalgar Square.

The view from the portico of the National Gallery.

One of the many performers I saw in Trafalgar Square.

Unfortunately, Van Gogh's "Sunflowers" is presently on loan to another museum, but I enjoyed his other works.

The Impressionist wing was my favorite. I was excited to find that some of Degas' work was located in the National Galley as well.

His series of women bathing has always been one of my favorites.

Me on the portico of the National Gallery, overlooking Trafalgar Square. 

It was too late to get to evensong on time by then, since I'd spent about two hours in the museum. I decided to go down to St Paul anyway, since I really wanted to see it. While the building was closed to visitors, the churchyard was not. 

I was not disappointed. I was stunned. I knew that it had been designed by Inigo Jones to replace the original which had burned during the 1666 Fire of London, but nothing could prepare me for its visual magnitude. 

A sculpture depicting the murder of Thomas Beckett was in the churchyard, and I couldn't resist taking this shot.

Roses filled the churchyard.

After St Paul's, I noticed that St Bart's was awfully close (about a block away). You can imagine for yourself what I did next.

But I won't make you.

An ominous sky...

But a happy telephone box!

I didn't have pen or paper, so I didn't leave any signs there. 

I just took a picture to prove I'd been there.


  1. I am loving following your adventures...keep up the posting!

  2. Pretty Japanese artifacts! :D


  3. Another great post! :) Glad you are having a good time- it all seems really neat :)

  4. I love your photographic eye!!!!