ashmolean

Department of Antiquities

About the department

The collections of the Department of Antiquities cover almost the entire span of human history from the Lower Palaeolithic to the Victorian era. They incorporate the surviving parts of the Museum's earliest collections, notably the founding collections of the Tradescants, which were donated to the University by Elias Ashmole in 1683. They also include a wide-ranging and comprehensive representation of the early cultures of Europe, Egypt and the Near East, which owes much to the Museum's long association with the field of archaeology.