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Construction of R34 was completed on 20 December 1918 and it was flown to East Fortune in May 1919.
Airship R.34

2019 marks the 100th anniversary of the first transatlantic flight from Britain to the United States. On 2 July 1919 Airship R.34 departed from East Fortune Airfield, landing on Long Island, New York 108 hours later.

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Michael Eden's Portals

This contemporary piece by sculptor Michael Eden celebrates the architectural styles of the National Museum of Scotland.

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Shetland Young Fiddler of the Year 2009 Chapman Cheng tries out the Shetland fiddle.
Shetland fiddle

Discover how this traditional Scottish instrument was commissioned for the Performance and Lives gallery in the National Museum of Scotland.

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A Vintage VE Day

Step back in time and experience life in wartime Britain to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day.

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Portrait of Sergeant-Major John Dickson

John Dickson was a Paisley weaver who joined the army in 1807 and rode in the famous charge of the Union Brigade at Waterloo.

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The Galloway Hoard: Viking-Age Treasure

The Galloway Hoard has now finished at the National Museum of Scotland but it will be on display at the Kirkcudbright Galleries from 9 October 2021 to 10 July 2022 and on to Aberdeen Museum and Art Gallery from 30 July to 23 October 2022.

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Donate

Our museums and their objects tell stories of people, places and history. We protect over 12 million objects and save their stories for the nation, but we need your support.

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Book your tickets

The National Museum of Flight is open and tickets are available to book online.

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Henrik Grönvold [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.
Giant ibis

Find out more about the only giant ibis skeleton owned by any museum in the world.

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Robots

Some robots have arrived at the Museum needing our help! But sometimes the best person to fix a robot... is another robot!

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Amateur Microscopists

In the early 18th century, natural history was an increasingly popular pastime and many people visited fields and ponds, often bringing a microscope, to investigate the flora and fauna.

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Dunlop tyre

This revolutionary pneumatic tyre was donated to the museum by its maker, John Boyd Dunlop, in 1910. But who really invented it?

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Silver spoons

These silver spoons were bought by Assistant Surgeon Stewart Chisholm using prize money awarded to him for his service at Waterloo.

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Living in Renaissance Scotland: the highs and lows

Join curator Anna Groundwater for a guided virtual tour of life in Renaissance Scotland at the National Museum of Scotland.

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Artworks by Danie Mellor

In 2013, National Museums Scotland acquired one metal sculpture and one work on paper by contemporary Australian artist Danie Mellor.

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Museum Maker: How to draw a King Penguin

Watch as artist Kayleigh McCallum shows you how to draw a King Penguin from our collection.

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Museum Maker: How to draw an Egyptian Coffin

Watch as artist Kayleigh McCallum shows you how to draw an Egyptian Coffin from our collection.

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Museum Maker: How to draw the Hunterston brooch

Watch as artist Kayleigh McCallum shows you how to draw the Hunterston Brooch from our collection.

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Museum Maker: Make a champion’s rosette

Summer is usually the season for gala days and rural shows, including our own Heavy Horse Show. Celebrate the champions you know – family, friends or even pets - by making them a personalised rosette!

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Art of Glass on film

Preparing for the Art of Glass exhibition at National Museum of Scotland.

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Dividing the Spoils: Perspectives on Military Collections and the British Empire

Find out more about our edited volume, published by Manchester University Press.

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Museum building at the National Museum of Rural Life © Wattie Cheung
Booking tickets

The National Museum of Rural Life is open and tickets are available to book online.

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Rip It Up associated events

As well as a host of live performances, talks and discussions hosted at the National Museum of Scotland, an exciting programme of associated events will be taking place across Edinburgh during the exhibition run.

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Tour of the Ancient Egyptian Gallery

Join curator Margaret Maitland for a guided virtual tour of our Ancient Egypt Rediscovered gallery.

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Contact us and Membership FAQs

Everything you need to know about Member benefits, becoming a Member, renewing or changing your Membership and gift Membership.

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Discovering Japan

From Samurai treasures to tiny netsuke, the National Museum of Scotland has the largest Japanese collection in Scotland.

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Stirling Engine

A Stirling engine is powered by hot air rather than steam. Now 200 years old, its revolutionary technology has become even more relevant today.

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Gift Membership

Give memories that last a lifetime, give the gift of Membership.

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From minerals to your mobile

A huge range of different elements are used to make up the components of a mobile phone. But did you know that many of them can be found in minerals you can see on display at the National Museum of Scotland?

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Membership

Members enjoy a range of exclusive benefits and support the work of National Museums Scotland. Join us from just £43.

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Tibetan objects

Most of the objects in the Museum’s Tibetan collection were acquired in the short timespan of 1890-1930, less than a lifetime, making this collection a snapshot of the British Empire’s relationship with Tibet.

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Visiting FAQs

Learn more about what’s changed to help you plan your visit to the National Museum of Rural Life.

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History of the collection

The story of how specimens make their way into a museum’s collection is often a peculiar one.

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Tyrannosaurs

Visitors met the most feared and revered of all dinosaurs in this cutting-edge exhibition, that brought the latest discoveries in palaeontology to life and challenging preconceptions about these ferocious predators.

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Foster stereo printing press model

This Victorian scale model of a printing press was made in the Museum's own workshop.

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Tyrannosaurus rex

Meet the 12 metre-long, spectacular life-sized skeleton cast of a Tyrannosaurus rex, one of the star attractions at the National Museum of Scotland.

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Common Cause on film

Our Common Cause exhibition explored the war experiences of soldiers of Scottish descent from the nations of the Commonwealth during the First World War. See films from the exhibition and find out how Scottish traditions have survived in regiments around the world today.

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© MOD Crown copyright  

The world famous Red Arrows conduct a daredevil close pass manoeuvre during display training in Greece.

The Royal Air Force Aerobatic team The Red Arrows deployed to Andravida and Tenagra in Greece to begin Exercise Springhawk.

The exercise runs from the 19th March until 05th May in Greece, and will consist of the Red Arrows performing their 9 ship display three times a day over various datums in order fir the display to meet the high standards expected for the display season. The end of the exercise will be marked by the pilots being awarded Public Display Authority which will allow them to display in public and wear the iconic red suits.
Hawk wings

The BAE Systems Hawk is a British single-engine, jet-powered advanced trainer aircraft. A stunning pair of Hawk wings with the iconic RAF Red Arrows livery are on display in the new Explore gallery at the National Museum of Scotland.

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GEN

GEN is an innovative strategy game where you can use biomedical objects from the museum collection to diagnose and treat a digital creature.

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The Reid Family Christmas and New Year

The Wester Kittochside Farm at National Museum of Rural Life was owned and run by the Reid family for more than 400 years. Find out how the tenth laird and his family celebrated Christmas and New Year on the farm.

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Josephine tumbler

This tumbler was given by Napoleon to Captain Francis Maitland of HMS Bellerophon, which took the deposed Emperor away.

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Unmask the Lewis chess pieces

Welcome to the world of the Lewis chess pieces! Discover all there is to know about these mysterious figures in this interactive resource.

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National Museums Scotland acquires one of the UK’s first autonomous vehicles

National Museums Scotland has acquired a prototype LUTZ Pathfinder, one of three vehicles used for the first test of fully self-driving cars in public in the UK. Going on display in the National Museum of Scotland from today, it is the first autonomous vehicle to enter a UK museum collection.

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Cup and cover by Malcolm Appleby

This striking ceremonial standing cup and cover was created especially for the Museum by virtuoso silversmith Malcolm Appleby.

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Colour and draw

We asked our Facebook fans which objects from the National Museum of Scotland their families would like to colour in, and here are the results! From our family of lions to the giant sunfish, T-Rex to our elephant - is your favourite here?

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The Rise and Fall of Hamilton Palace

The destruction of Hamilton Palace, the grandest stately home in Britain, was one of the greatest losses to national heritage ever to happen in this country. This is the story of how Scotland’s biggest treasure trove was won and lost.

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Made in Scotland, Changing the World

Over the last 300 years, Scottish scientists and engineers have made discoveries and inventions that have changed our relationship with the world. From simple, everyday processes to cutting edge of 21st-century medicine, Scotland remains at the heart of scientific innovation.

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Our Japanese collection

Explore highlights of our Japanese collection, from tiny netsuke to cutting edge designs, superb ceramics to Ainu artefacts.

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Scotland and the Caribbean

What do museum collections reveal about Britain’s and Scotland’s role in the Transatlantic slave system and the experiences of enslaved people?

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