The British Museum Puts Nearly 2 Million Artworks Online for Free Public Use

Egyptian Wine Jar Housed in The British Museum's Collections

Egyptian wine jar (Photo: © The Trustees of the British Museum.)

The British Museum has just unveiled a unique, behind-the-scenes opportunity for visitors while the museum is closed due to coronavirus safety regulations—they’ve expanded their online collection to include nearly 4.5 million objects. To add to the overwhelming number of accessible images in their digital collections, the public institution has now permitted nearly two million of these uploads to be downloaded for non-commercial use under the Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0 license.

While this application can initially seem a bit confusing to the untrained visitor, the museum has provided an instruction guide for perfecting your various searches. According to the guide, when you head to their collection’s website, you can type your target topic into the search bar and use the auto-generated categories that pop up to start your search. From there, you can further refine the images that are pulled from your searches by criteria like the type of object it is, or its date of origin.

Famous pieces like The Rosetta Stone can be found in the museum's digital collection.

The Rosetta Stone Housed in The British Museum's Collections

The Rosetta Stone (Photo: © The Trustees of the British Museum.)

While The British Museum is not the first cultural institution to create some kind of digital adaptation for visitors to use amid its closure, its additions are some of the most expansive that have been released. To find out more information about The British Museum’s digital collection, and for any updates about its reopening, head to their website.

Afghani Amulet Housed in The British Museum's Collections

Amulet from Afghanistan (Photo: © The Trustees of the British Museum.)

Check out more art from Albrecht Dürer and 1.9 million other images from The British Museum's digital collections at their website.

Albrecht Dürer Drawing from 1502 Housed in The British Museum

Drawing by Albrecht Dürer circa 1502-1504 (Photo: © The Trustees of the British Museum.)

The British Museum: Website | Facebook | Twitter
h/t: [PetaPixel]

All images via The British Museum.

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Megan Cooper

Megan Cooper is a Contributing Writer for My Modern Met and a mid-century historian living in Charlotte, North Carolina. She has received a BSA in Public History from Appalachian State University in 2017 and is currently working towards finishing a Masters in Film and Media Studies through Arizona State University. She is extremely passionate about gender and women's studies and the democratization of cultural knowledge.
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