Museum has its own ways of living and persisting in present times in every culture around the world. We as humans may have evolved with time but we have preserved each and every event in our evolution by some of the other means. Now the ways to preserve the “old-time” might differ from culture to culture but we all share similar motives behind that; which is to learn and study our relation with the past in a more detailed and defined way. And one such institution which preserves and dedicates itself to the various evidence and milestones which connect the dots in human history are “Museums”.
The Birth Of The Museum
The word “museum” means various things in various languages. In Latin, the word shows a Roman origin is a place where the philosophical discussion takes place. And hence more or less the first prototype of the museum came in the 3rd century by Ptolemy, which was the Great Museum at Alexandria. It was famous for its library and it was an institution that preserved the material aspects of that time. Till the 17th century, the word often as a reference to the concept of the collective collection but not essentially in a building. But in the 17th century, the word museum got its proper shape in Europe. It was now frequently famous for the collection of various catalogs and other documents. And from there came the time where the word museum was prevalent for a building or place where cultural documents were kept for public access.
The Ancient Times Museum
The museum may serve various purposes; educational and research facilities, national history and national endeavor, attract tourism, promotion of some ideological concept and much more. This concept of preservation and interpretation has been in human civilization from time unknown. It dates back to the collection of objects from Paleolithic burials and the signs of interpretations. It is easily visible in cave paintings and art of the same period. Although the word museum might not have been invented in those times but the sense of preserving the tradition can be seen in a lot of cultures. As the human evolved and developed this took rather a dominating side in various continents.
Being said about the Museums and their diverse nature and the kind of role they play in society, these can be divided or rather categorized in different sections based on their purpose. Along with the purpose they serve their division can be on the basis of the funding that they enjoy. National museums, for example, get funding from the government but on the other hand, can hold any international collection. So rather in modern times, we have classified them as “General” and “Specialized” museums. As the name says, general museums hold collections and or documents on more than one kind of subject.
These have a multidisciplinary or interdisciplinary basis for operation. It is also seen at some places that general museums serve the context of cultural and traditional integrity of the nation or the place where it is located. Specialized museums are more specific about their audience. These range from history museums to science and technology museums. The collections are strictly based on the titled given to them which attracts the population with the same interest.
As we evolve with science and technology, technology has found its way in our lives on a whole new level. With museums, it has gained a new level of “Virtual Museums”. There is a linkage of Virtual museums are with the internet to provide a wide range of multimedia and online documents along with images. These institutions are the modern ways of preserving and promoting our history.