Fossil tales and stories are as diverse as the civilisations that created them, legends grew up around these unexplained objects as a way to make sense of their origin and identity.

#FossilTales

Fossil Tales is a small display, that brings together a range of fossils from National Museums Scotland's collection to explore some of the myths and early uses for fossils.

Palaeontology, the study of fossils, is a relatively new science. Fossils, the remains of once living plants or animals, can help us understand how some forms of live evolved and others became extinct. Some ancient scholars had realised the true nature of fossils, but it was not not until the 1700s that Europeans began to collect and classify fossils in a scientific manner. Before then fossils had been used and interpreted in many different ways by many different cultures. 

  • Cidaris glandaria, Lebanon

    Cidaris glandaria, Lebanon
  • Trigonia incurva, Jurassic, Swindon, Wiltshire

    Trigonia incurva, Jurassic, Swindon, Wiltshire
  • Nummulites sp, Great Pyramid Giza

    Nummulites sp, Great Pyramid Giza
  • Crinoid columnals, Carboniferous, No locality

    Crinoid columnals, Carboniferous, No locality
  • Hildoceras sp, Jurassic, No locality

    Hildoceras sp, Jurassic, No locality

 

Header image: Fossil ammonite, Hildoceras bifrons from the Jurassic of Whitby, Yorkshire, England

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Exhibition information

When

7 Apr - 10 Sep 2017
10:00 - 17:00

Where

Exhibition Gallery 3, Level 1, Grand Gallery

How much

Free