The Fitzwilliam Museum
From Egyptian coffins to Impressionist masterpieces – the Fitzwilliam Museum's world-class collections of art and antiquities span centuries and civilizations.
Tuesday - Saturday: 10:00 - 17:00
Sundays & Bank Holidays: 12:00 - 17:00
The Fitzwilliam Museum has magnificent permanent collections of international importance. The entire collection is a Designated Collection of national importance.
Holdings include antiquities from Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome; English and European pottery and glass; furniture, clocks, fans and armour, coins, medals, illuminated, literary and music manuscripts and rare printed books; paintings, including masterpieces by Simone Martini, Domenico Veneziano, Veronese, Titian, Rubens, Hals, Van Dyck, Canaletto, Hogarth, Gainsborough, Constable, Degas, Renoir, Cézanne, Monet and Picasso, portrait miniatures and 20th century art, and changing displays of drawings, watercolours and prints. The collections also include artefacts from Sudan and Cyprus, and Chinese, Japanese and Korean art, rugs and samplers.
Founded in 1816, the Museum is housed in splendid buildings, the first of which, designed by George Basevi opened in 1848.
Items from this collection
Weapons and War, Music, Fine Art, Decorative and Applied Art, Costume and Textiles, Coins and Medals, Archaeology
Key artists and exhibits
- Ancient Egypt, Sudan
- Greece and Rome
- Roman and Romano-Egyptian Art
- Western Asiatic displays and Cypriot Art
- English and European pottery and glass, furniture, clocks, fans, armour
- Chinese, Japanese and Korean art
- Simone Martini, Domenico Veneziano, Titian, Veronese, Rubens, Van Dyck, Hals, Canaletto, Hogarth, Gainsborough, Constable, Monet, Degas, Renoir, Cézanne and Picasso
- Designated Collection
Sampled Lives: Samplers from the Fitzwilliam Museum
- 6 May 2017 — 8 April 2018 *on now
Showcasing over 100 samplers from the Museum’s excellent but often unseen collection, this display highlights the importance of samplers as documentary evidence of past lives.
These beautifully embroidered and stitched samplers illuminate the lives of girls and women, from mid-17th century English Quakers to early 20th century school pupils, encompassing their education, employment, religion, family, societal status and needlework skills. The display also highlights the individuality of each sampler, which in some cases is the only surviving document to record the existence of an ordinary young woman.
This display will be accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue by Carol Humphrey, Honorary Keeper of Textiles, available to purchase from the Courtyard Shop.
- Any age
Inspired by Civilisations
- 27 April — 7 May 2018
Display of objects included in an episode of BBC TV's Civilisations, in which Mary Beard explores the theme of how we look at art.
- Any age
How should we talk about civilisation?
- 6 March 2018 6:30-8pm
This panel discussion with Mary Beard (Cambridge University and co-presenter of Civilisations) Sadiah Qureshi (Birmingham University) and Matt Smith (Artist and Konstfack University Stockholm) is inspired by Civilisations, the BBC series. We are posing the question how should we talk about civilisation? The Civilisations Festival coincides with the opening of our "Flux" exhibition, featuring 100 19th-century sculptural busts in Parian - a kind of porcelain. Matt Smith's curation of this display asks why do museums celebrate the lives of some people and ignore others? Who writes history? Whose histories define Britishness and how does this change over time. Our distinguished panel will extend these ideas in the course of their discussion.
Half the available seats will be reserved free of charge for sixth form students. Teachers or pupils should email: firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve places.
The Fitzwilliam Museum