Amgueddfa Blog

Hello, Michelle and Alisha here – we are third year journalism students from the University of South Wales.

We are at the National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, on a one-week work placement with Saving Treasures; Telling Stories. We thought it would be interesting to study a topic completely unknown to us for our work experience, to broaden our understanding of history and how it affects us.

To begin our week, we were introduced to several museum professionals in the Archaeology department and had the opportunity to learn about the day to day running of museums and see all the work that goes on behind the scenes!  

Before working at the museum, we thought that treasure was what we’d seen in the movies - glittering chests of gold coins and shiny jewels! But when we were shown the stores in the cellar, we realised that not all artefacts are pretty to look at and many items declared treasure are of higher historical value than financial reward.

We were able to see the Conservation department, where they work to restore and carefully conserve items for the museum collections. This includes archaeological artefacts, but also pieces from the department of natural history.

After our initial exploration of the museum, our task for the week was to produce an article investigating how museums are funded and how beneficial donating archaeological finds can be to museum collections. In order to create the article, we were set a number of tasks, this included carrying out several over the phone interviews with museum curators from various museums across Wales. With plenty of research, we finally got down to business and wrote the feature, which will hopefully be published very soon!

We have really enjoyed our week in the museum, learning new things. We will miss our new friends – Alice and Rhianydd, who have been really kind and attentive during our placement. We look forward to coming back to visit and seeing new items being declared treasure.

For more information about the Saving Treasures; Telling Stories Project, in association with the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Portable Antiquites Scheme in Wales, click here.

Ar y 29fed o Ebrill 2018, bu farw Gwyn Griffiths, cyfaill mawr i Lydaw, newyddiadurwr ac awdur. Ysgrifennodd lyfrau am lên Cymru a llên Llydaw a gwnaeth gyfraniad hollbwysig i hanes y ddwy wlad hon trwy gofnodi hanes y Sioni Winwns yn y Gymraeg, Ffrangeg ac yn y Saesneg.  Yn 1995, chwaraeodd ran flaenllaw yn sefydlu’r amgueddfa fach am y Sionis a leolir Roscoff, sef La Maison des Johnnies et de l’Oignon Rose de Roscoff.

Jean-Marie Cueff ac Olivier Bertevas, Bute Street, 1978.

Teithiodd i Lydaw fwy na 40 gwaith, roedd hi’n wlad yr oedd yn ei adnabod yn dda ac yn wlad a oedd yn agos iawn i’w galon. Mae ei waith ymchwil am y Sionis yn gyfraniad hynod o bwysig i hanes Llydaw ac hefyd i hanes Cymru, gan mai ef oedd yr unig un, hyd y gwyddom, i recordio rhai o’r gwŷr hynod hyn yn siarad Cymraeg. Yn ogystal â Chymraeg, recordiwyd eu hanesion hefyd yn y Saesneg, y Llydaweg a’r Ffrangeg ac aeth Gwyn ati i dynnu toreth o luniau diddorol a gwerthfawr yn olrhain eu hanes

Yn 2013, derbyniodd yr Archif alwad ffôn gan Gwyn Griffiths. Roedd yn holi ar ran dwy Lydawes a oedd yn gwneud ymchwil i hanes y Sionis. Gofynnodd am wybodaeth am unrhyw eitemau eisoes yng nghasgliad sain yr Archif ac wrth i’r sgwrs ar y ffôn fynd yn ei blaen, roedd brwdfrydedd ac angerdd y gŵr hwn tuag at Lydaw a thuag at ei gwerthwyr winwns yn heintus. Roedd yn fraint gan yr Amgueddfa i dderbyn ei gasgliad o recordiadau sain ac o luniau. Roedd yn rhaid i mi drefnu i’w ffilmio yn siarad!

                                                                                    Cliciwch ar y llun isod i wylio'r fideo.

 

 

Gwrandewch isod ar ddarn o gyfweliad Gwyn Griffiths gyda Marie Le Goff, gwerthwraig winwns, tua 1988, er mwyn cael blas ar y casgliad.

Marie Le Goff.

Kenavo Gwyn!

As palaeontology curators, we have the privilege of working with the Museum’s vast fossil collections.  From trilobites to tree ferns, ammonites to mammoths, corals to dinosaurs, they are individually fascinating and beautiful.  Collectively, they are the evidence that allows us to chronicle life on Earth going back over 500 million years.  When faced with such prehistoric riches on a daily basis, it is easy to take fossils for granted.  In reality, each and every fossil in the Museum is one of the lucky ones.  Most of the countless animals and plants that have ever lived on this planet did not become fossils.  Many things can happen to prevent something becoming a fossil – it can be eaten, torn apart by scavengers, rotted away or cooked by the Earth’s hot core.  Fossilization is a rare event, which requires the chance coming together of a series of circumstances and conditions.  When you realise this, you cannot look at a fossil without feeling wonder and awe that it exists at all.

In the Palaeontology section of the Natural Sciences Department we decided to develop an activity which would allow people to explore how and when fossilization happens.  With the support of a Geological Society grant, we produced a board game called ‘Fossilization Frenzy’, which we launched at our ‘Biology and Geology Rock!’ event, held to celebrate Earth Science Week and National Biology Week in October 2016.  The game invites people to choose one of four animals that lived in the Jurassic seas, around 200 million years ago, and the aim is to see if their animal can become fossilized and end up on display in the Museum. 

Visit our Learning resource page to download the Fossilization Frenzy game

Given the unlikelihood of fossilization, there are many trials and tribulations along the way, and the chances of winning are not as high as with most board games.  There were also valuable lessons to be learnt in choosing your animal wisely – if you choose the insubstantial jellyfish, then the odds are going to be stacked against you.  We found that the game generated a healthy level of competition between classmates and family members of all ages, and many participants played several times until they succeeded in making it into that coveted fossil display case. 

Following the enthusiastic response to the game from family groups at the ‘Biology and Geology Rock!’ event, we delivered it to school groups at the Lyme Regis Fossil Festival in May 2017, as part of the Palaeontological Association’s outreach programme.  We were pleasantly surprised to find that ‘Fossilization Frenzy!’ was as well received by teenagers on Secondary Schools Day as it was by younger children on Primary Schools Day.  There were many more enthusiastic players across the weekend when the festival was open to the public, including several adults unaccompanied by children.  Clearly the desire to become immortalised in stone crosses age and generational boundaries!  The game has since been successfully delivered to primary school groups and general public at the Yorkshire Fossil Festival in Scarborough (September 2017).  It was also trialled by our Learning team at the Association of Science Educators Conference, and the Welsh language version was used as part of our outreach work on the Jurassic Earth Timescale Project in North Wales (October 2017).

After receiving several requests for the board game from teachers we have now available for download as a pdf file.  The game is available in Welsh language, English language and bilingual versions.  Follow this link to find out more about the learning aims of the game and to access the downloadable pdfs.

Play Fossilization Frenzy now

Lucy McCobb, Caroline Buttler, Trevor Bailey and Cindy Howells

A selection of emotive, thought-provoking images from the period of the First World War has been added to the National Museum Wales Commercial Picture Library and Museum Wales Prints service.

In 2014, National Museum Cardiff held an exhibition, The Great War: Britain’s Efforts and Ideals, which displayed a complete series of 66 lithographs of artistic propaganda prints commissioned by the Bureau of Propaganda (later renamed the Ministry of Information) in 1917. 

The aim of the series was to encourage a war-weary public and to raise support for the war effort. The lithographs were published under the two titles ‘Efforts’ and ‘Ideals’ and contain work contributed by 18 artists including Frank Brangwyn, Muirhead Bone, George Clausen and A. S. Hartrick.

Under the ‘Efforts’ section, nine of the artists were commissioned to produce six works under a heading, including Making Guns, Women’s Work and Wounded. Within the ‘Ideals’ portfolio, the 12 artists illustrated the ambitions and aims of the war. The artists were given subjects to work within and each of the images had to pass censorship regulations.  

Each image shows people going about their daily lives during the war. Like so many others, they were ordinary people living in extraordinary times, selflessly sacrificing for others and all of us today.

To read more about this collection, please open the following link by Rhodri Viney, Digital Content Assistant at Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales:

Blog by Rhodri Viney

To reflect upon the centenary of the end of the First World War, National Museum Cardiff is holding an exhibition entitled Poppies for Remembrance. This exhibition will explore how the poppy became the symbol for remembrance, provide an opportunity for contemplation and reflection on loss and recovery, as well as look at the science of poppy biodiversity, the many species of poppies worldwide and the threats to their existence.  The exhibition will run from 21 July 2018 to 3 March 2019. Details below:

Poppies for Remembrance Exhibition

 

Commercial Picture Library

Museum Wales Prints

4,830 pupils from across the UK are to be awarded Super Scientist certificates on behalf of Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales, in recognition for their contribution to the Spring Bulbs for Schools Investigation.

A big congratulations to you all! Thank you for working so hard planting, observing, measuring and recording, you really are Super Scientists! Each one of you will receive a Super Scientist certificate and pencil, these will be sent to your school by the end of May.

Many thanks to The Edina Trust for funding this project.

Super Scientist Winners 2018

Schools to be awarded certificates:

To receive Super Scientist certificates and pencils.

Schools with special recognition:

To be awarded certificates, pencils and sunflower seeds.

Highly commended schools:

To be awarded certificates, pencils, sunflower seeds and surprise seeds.

Runners-up:

To be awarded certificates, pencils, a variety of seeds and gift vouchers.

Winners 2018:

Each will receive certificates, pencils, seeds and a prize for the class!