Maidstone Museum and Bentlif Art Gallery
Image - Heritage Britain
Maidstone Museum in Kent houses a diverse number of collections within its beautiful Grade II Elizabethan house, Chillington Manor. The Manor itself was built in 1562, but it became a public museum in 1855 when Thomas Charles, the owner, bequeathed his collection of antiquarian objects to the town. The town subsequently bought the Manor and it became the town's museum. Additions to the building were made in the late 19th century when an east and west wing was added in order to accommodate the increasing donations from Maidstone's Victorian collectors and benefactors.
Today, the galleries hold an extensive amount of objects illustrating the story of mankind and the environment within Kent, with particular reference to Maidstone itself. The collections have grown over the last 150 to also cover themes of fine and applied art, oriental art, ethnography, natural science, archaeology and local history.
The Egyptian collection consists of 584 Egyptian antiquities which form part of its Archaeology collection. There are a variety of objects, including: amulets, canopic jars, coffins, flints, funerary cones, glass vessels, jewellery, metal and wooden figures, animal and human remains including a mummy, pottery, scarabs, cosmetic palettes, shabtis, stone vessels and textiles.
The provenance of the objects place them as coming from various sites, including: Alexandria, El-Amrah, Ballas, Beni Hasan, Fayum, Ehnasya, el-Kal, Hierakonpolis, Naqada and Thebes.
Maidstone Museum is currently running an exhibition on ancient Egypt called Secret Egypt, Unravelling Truth from Myth. it runs until 3 September 2012 and showcases over 150 objects from both its own collections and that of the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery and The Herbert in Coventry.
Click here to see a video about the exhibition.
Image - Maidstone Museum