British Museum makes more than half of its collection available online during the coronavirus lockout – including a & # 39; lost & # 39; watercolor by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, the Lewis Chessmen and the East Hoa Hakananai & # 39; a statue

  • Nearly 4.5 million objects can now be viewed through the museum's free online portal
  • Advanced zoom technology will allow users to view items in extreme detail
  • The museum has reported a 120 percent increase in online visitors in lockdown
  • Here you can help people who are not affected by Covid-19

The British Museum has released more than half of its extensive collection – more than four million objects – for free online during the coronavirus lockon.

Items including a once lost watercolor by Dante Gabriel Rossetti and the stunning Lewis Chessmen can be viewed freely from the comfort of your own home.

The refurbishment of & # 39; s online collection includes a zoom feature that allows some objects to be examined at & # 39; a level of detail that is not accessible to the naked eye & # 39 ;.

This includes Hoa Hakananai & # 39; a beautiful – as a statue – of Easter Island that has been in the museum for 150 years and Islanders have called on it to be returned.

Also seen at digital & # 39; near quarters & # 39; is a 1,600-year-old Chinese narrative painting on a silk scroll – with more zoomable images that will be added in the coming weeks.

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The British Museum has released more than half of its extensive collection – more than four million objects – for free online during the coronavirus lockon. Pictured, Hoa Hakananai from Easter Island, one of the objects that online users can explore nearby

The online collection – first made available in 2007 – included all of the museum's most famous objects, such as the Rosetta Stone, the Sutton Hoo artifacts, the Cyrus Cylinder, the Elgin Marbles and the Benin Bronzes.

However, the redesign has improved the user interface and added many more recent acquisitions – including a 3,000-year-old Bronze Age pendant and the previously lost Rossetti watercolor.

Remarkably, the online repository now has the complete collections of the museum from both Ancient Egypt and Australia.

Also available online are various sculptures from ancient Greece and Rome, and some 50,000 English coins that were minted from the medieval period to the time of the & # 39; e Tudors themselves.

These are accompanied by more than 750,000 prints by famous artists including Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn, William Hogarth and Kara Walker.

In total, approximately 280,000 new photos of objects and 85,000 new records have been added to our online collection, with the timing of & # 39; a launch of & # 39; revamp was brought forward to allow the public to enjoy the museum despite the lockdown.

The refurbishment of & # 39; s online collection includes a zoom feature that allows some objects to be examined at & # 39; a level of detail that is not accessible to the naked eye & # 39 ;. Pictured, the Lewis Chessmen

The refurbishment of & # 39; s online collection includes a zoom feature that allows some objects to be examined at & # 39; a level of detail that is not accessible to the naked eye & # 39 ;. Pictured, the Lewis Chessmen

The redesign has improved the user interface of the & # 39; s online collection and added many more recent acquisitions - including a 3,000-year-old Bronze Age pendant and the recently lost Dante Gabriel Rossetti watercolor, pictured

The redesign has improved the user interface of & # 39; s online collection and added many more recent acquisitions – including a 3,000-year-old Bronze Age pendant and the recently lost Dante Gabriel Rossetti watercolor, pictured

In total, approximately 280,000 new photos of objects and 85,000 new records have been added to our online collection, with the timing of & # 39; a launch of & # 39; revamp was brought forward to allow the public to enjoy the museum despite the lockdown. Pictured, a & # 39; Royal Game of Ur & # 39; board from the third millennium BC of Iraq

In total, approximately 280,000 new photos of objects and 85,000 new records have been added to our online collection, with the timing of & # 39; a launch of & # 39; revamp was brought forward to allow the public to enjoy the museum despite the lockdown. Pictured, a & # 39; Royal Game of Ur & # 39; board from the third millennium BC of Iraq

& # 39; While the world is grappling with this current crisis, I am glad that so many people are coming to the British Museum's website and online collections, & # 39; said the director, Hartwig Fischer.

& # 39; Our collection testifies to the ability of & # 39; & # 39; a human to survive and indeed flourish in awkward times, & # 39;

& # 39; We are delighted to be able to discover this great refurbishment early, and hope that these important objects can provide inspiration, reflection or even just silent moments of distraction during this difficult time. & # 39;

The museum has reported a huge increase in traffic to its website since it closed its doors on March 18 because of the COVID-19 crisis – with online visitor numbers increasing by 120 percent compared to this time last year.

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