Library Teylers Museum, Haarlem, Oldest museum in the Netherlands
Behind the heavy monumental door of Teylers Museum, a whole world of the past awaits you: the world of the eighteenth century, the Enlightenment, when the newest scientific experiments were made, when newly excavated fossils were put on show, and when people marvelled at accounts of recent journeys of discovery. To each inquiring person, learning and discovering were essential – as they still are today.
The oldest museum in the Netherlands, Teylers was founded in the eighteenth century and still exudes the atmosphere of that time. Built in 1784 to house exhibits legated by Pieter Teyler, a wealthy banker and merchant, it has hardly changed in all those years. As a visitor, you wander past the various items shown in the attractive historical display cases, which are lit only by daylight. It is as if you were leafing through an encyclopaedia, allowing each object to tell its own story – each fossil, mineral or scientific instrument; each coin, medal, book, print, painting or drawing. Some are famous, some are complex; all are fascinating.
You can hear the stories of these exhibits on the free audio-tour, or learn more about them in our Multimedia Room. Most objects are shown in the very same display case in which they were placed years ago by people whose view of the world was very different. All evoking the sensation that, just for a moment, time has stood still… In our modern wing, you then enter the present day. This is where we stage exhibitions and give presentations that spotlight particular items from our large permanent collection. These events are often organised around a current theme, combining important loans with our most beautiful fossils, coins and books, or with drawings by famous artists. Recent exhibitions include those on Maria Sybilla Merian, piercing, Antarctica, dinosaurs and dragons, Jacob Maris, and Michelangelo. So enter the encyclopaedic world of Teylers Museum: we look forward to welcoming you!
The Oval Room of Teylers Museum in Haarlem. Teylers museum is the Netherlands' first and oldest museu...
The Library of Teylers Museum in Haarlem. Teylers museum is the Netherlands' first and oldest museum....
The Instrument Room of Teylers Museum in Haarlem. Teylers museum is the Netherlands' first and oldest...
The Second Fossil Room of Teylers Museum in Haarlem. Teylers museum is the Netherlands' first and old...
Teylers Museum, is the Netherlands' first and oldest museum, open to the public since 1784. Unique to...
The Teylers Museum, is the Netherlands' first and oldest museum, open to the public since 1784. Uniqu...
Lange Veerstraat at Haarlem, The Netherlands
Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.
The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.
Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".
Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.
Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights.
In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states.
Text by Steve Smith.