Specialized personal collections
The developing interest in human as well as natural history in the 16th century led to the creation of specialized collections. In Italy alone more than 250 natural history collections are recorded in that century, including the fine herbarium of Luca Ghini at Padua and the more eclectic collection of Ulisse Aldrovandi at Bologna. Other notable natural history collections of the time elsewhere in Europe were those of Conrad Gesner, Félix Platter, and, a little later, the John Tradescants, father and son. Among the specialized historical collections were those of portraits of great men assembled by Paolo Giovio at Como, the archaeological collection of the Grimani family of Venice, and the fine collection of illuminated manuscripts gathered by Sir Robert Cotton in England. A number of the latter had been acquired from monasteries closed during the Reformation. In due time these various collections found their way into museums. So did the collections of Ferrante Imperato of Naples, Bernard Paludanus (Berant ten Broecke) of Amsterdam, and Ole Worm of Copenhagen.
museum, institution dedicated to preserving and interpreting the primary tangible evidence of humankind and the environment. In its preserving of this primary evidence, the museum differs markedly from the library, with which it has often been compared, for the items housed in a museum are mainly unique and constitute the raw material of study and research. In many cases they are removed in time, place, and circumstance from their original context, and they communicate directly to the viewer in a way not possible through other media. Museums have been founded for a variety of purposes: to serve as recreational facilities, scholarly venues, or educational resources; to contribute to the quality of life of the areas where they are situated; to attract tourism to a region; to promote civic pride or nationalistic endeavour; or even to transmit overtly ideological concepts. Given such a variety of purposes, museums reveal remarkable diversity in form, content, and even function. Yet, despite such diversity, they are bound by a common goal: the preservation and interpretation of some material aspect of society’s cultural consciousness.
As institutions that preserve and interpret the material evidence of humankind, human activity, and the natural world, museums have a long and varied history, springing from what may be an innate human desire to collect and interpret and having discernible origins in large collections built up by individuals and groups before the modern era.
For centuries, museums have played an integral role in preserving the history of our society. Exhibits tell us stories about how our nation, our communities and our cultures came to be and without them, those stories could be forgotten. Museums serve our communities in a multitude of ways
Through history, we can learn how past societies, systems, ideologies, governments, cultures and technologies were built, how they operated, and how they have changed. The rich history of the world helps us to paint a detailed picture of where we stand today.
It not only gives us knowledge but also makes us familiar with our history, culture, civilization, religion, art, architecture of our country. In the museum, there are many things which are kept for the public.
The benefits of the museum are that the people can learn a lot about the history, arts, culture of a place just by visiting them. There are various scientific museums which impart knowledge to the people even from the nontechnical fields.
The purpose of modern museums is to collect, preserve, interpret, and display objects of artistic, cultural, or scientific significance for the study and education of the public. From a visitor or community perspective, this purpose can also depend on one's point of view.
In a museum we can learn how things were done, what life looked like and even what people wore and did in the past. It is living history from times gone by that helps us understand ourselves.