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National War Museum

Within the walls of Edinburgh Castle, the National War Museum tells the story of Scotland at war.

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National War Museum Library

The Library is based in the National War Museum within the walls of Edinburgh Castle.

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National War Museum resources

Resources for your class trip to the National War Museum.

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Architecture trail of the National Museum of Scotland

The National Museum of Scotland is housed in magnificent buildings. Find out about its striking architectural details below, and explore them further on your next visit to our Museum.

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First World War

1914 brought war to Scotland on what would prove to be an unprecedented scale. Delve into the stories behind those who fought in the First World War here.

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Tour the National Museum of Scotland on Google StreetView

The National Museum of Scotland has become the first museum or gallery in Scotland available for exploration online via Google Arts & Culture’s Museum View experience.

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First World War centenary

Our First World War Centenary programme of exhibitions and events shares the Scottish memory of these world-changing events with national and international visitors.

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National Museum of Flight resources

Resources for your class visit to the National Museum of Flight.

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National Museum of Scotland

Your journey of discovery starts here.

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Second World War

1939 saw the start of a conflict that would change Scotland and the world. Discover Scottish stories related to different aspects of the Second World War - life on the Home Front, the development of technology driven by the conflict, and personal memories of some of the people who lived through it.

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National Museum of Rural Life

Explore life in the countryside at our five-star museum, farmhouse and historic working farm.

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National Museum of Flight

Wing your way to one of Scotland's top days out at East Fortune Airfield.

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Venue hire at the National Museum of Scotland

In the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, the National Museum of Scotland offers an impressive selection of venues for a wide range of events.

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Prisoners of war at East Kilbride

During and directly after the Second World War, the Reid family at Wester Kittochside, East Kilbride employed both Italian and German prisoners of war.

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National Museum of Rural Life resources

Resources to use during your visit to the National Museum of Rural Life.

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National Museum of Scotland resources

Resources for your class visit to the National Museum of Scotland.

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Venue hire at our other museums

The National Museum of Flight, National Museum of Rural Life and National War Museum present further opportunities for entertaining on every scale.

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Museum libraries

Our library services support the research and learning needs of Museum staff, visitors, and the wider external research community.

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Casualty of War: A Portrait of Maharaja Duleep Singh

Casualty of War: A Portrait of Maharaja Duleep Singh is by renowned British Sikh artists, The Singh Twins.

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Clydesdale horse

Our beautiful Clydesdale horses are one of the star attractions at the National Museum of Rural Life

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Making the Museum

More than 10 million objects make their home at the National Museum of Scotland. Discover the secrets of our treasures with this unique five-part series.

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Art at War

Discover a range of paintings, drawings and pastels from the First and Second World Wars from our military collection.

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Visiting our museums

Discover the latest information about visiting our museums

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The Typewriter Revolution

A new exhibition at the National Museum of Scotland will examine the social and technological impact of typewriters over more than 100 years, from early prototypes to stylish mid-century models, which are still in use today.

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Materialising the Cold War

For forty years two superpowers and their allies took the world back and forth from the brink of catastrophe in a nuclear stand-off that pervaded everyday life for billions. Three decades since the fall of the Berlin Wall, our collaborative project ‘Materialising the Cold War’ explores how this conflict is represented in museums.

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Objects linked to Waterloo

Explore the story of Waterloo at the National War Museum.

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History of the National Museum of Scotland

In 2016, we celebrated 150 years since the magnificent building that houses the National Museum of Scotland first opened to the public. Explore the Museum’s history here.

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Harvesting machinery of the 20th century

At the National Museum of Rural Life we have a significant collection of 20th-century harvesting machines in our large machinery store.

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Discover the Museum

Discover the Museum brings classes from schools who are not regular visitors, from areas of mid-high deprivation within Edinburgh, to the National Museum of Scotland for a free, self-led, supported visit.

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Tour of the Kingdom of the Scots Gallery

Join curator Lydia Prosser for a guided virtual tour of our Kingdom of the Scots gallery at the National Museum of Scotland.

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Chinese Oracle Bones

Visitors discovered some of the treasures within the National Museum Scotland's significant collection of oracle bones, the second largest in the world outside of China.

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Supermarine Spitfire LF.XVIe

The Spitfire is the most famous of all British combat aircraft, and played a vital role in the Battle of Britain in 1940.

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Conscience Matters

This exhibition at the National War Museum explores the little-known story of British conscientious objectors of the Second World War through paintings, poems, letters, music and speeches.

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The Maiden

Long before the French Revolution, the Scots had invented and were using the beheading machine known as the Maiden. It was used to execute criminals and political opponents of the crown from 1564 to 1710.

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The Storming of Tel-el-Kebir

The battle of Tel-el-Kebir was a decisive moment in the British maintaining order in Egypt in the late 19th century and its depicted in a magnificent painting at National War Museum.

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The poppy

Find out how and why the poppy was adopted as a symbol of remembrance in the aftermath of the First World War.

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The Reid family

The Wester Kittochside Farm at National Museum of Rural Life was owned and run by the Reid family for more than 400 years.

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People's Postcode Lottery

Thanks to support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery, we are able to create opportunities for people of all ages, abilities and walks of life to enjoy our museums and connect with inspiring collections.

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Flying into the Future Trail

Discover how engineers are working to make air travel less damaging to the environment with this museum trail.

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Museum Stories with Chief Chebe

Join Chief Chebe as he takes you on two African storytelling adventures at the National Museum of Scotland.

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New to the National Collection

New to the National Collection showcased the latest additions to our collections, including objects that will feature in ten new galleries in 2016.

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Thank you

Thanks to your help we have now raised the funds required to complete the 15-year long transformation of the National Museum of Scotland.

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Tartan barkcloth by José Hendo

This striking fusion of styles, traditions, and Scottish and Ugandan cultures is designer José Hendo's sustainable fashion statement for our times.

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L’Éden panoramic wallpaper

Uncover the landscape of L’Éden, a set of 20 rolls of 19th-century scenic wallpaper and discover how this spectacular wallcovering has been conserved by the Museum.

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Museum Art Challenge

What inspires you in our museums? Get creative and join our month-long online art challenge at National Museums Scotland!

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Second World War: Technology

Changing technology played a vital role in the Second World War. Major advances in communications, weaponry and medicine came about as a direct result of the conflict.

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Advisory Board Meeting at the National Museum of World Cultures, Leiden

On 28 November 2018, colleagues from our Advisory Board met at the National Museum of World Cultures in Leiden to discuss how the project has progressed since our last meeting.

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Museum reopening

Our museums are now open and tickets are available to book. We can't wait to welcome you back.

Find out more