News | Published: Thu 29 Apr 2010

Take a fresh look at our collections with new website feature

Explore some of the fascinating histories behind objects in the Fitzwilliam Museum with Hidden Histories: Names and Faces.

This new area of the Museum's website takes a fresh look at the collections, telling the stories of people and their connections with objects. It includes people who made important discoveries such as the Cambridge Hoard of gold and silver coins; people who have owned and cherished objects, such as the jewellery collector Anne Hull Grundy; and people who have been inspired by objects, both great and small, in the Museum's collection, such as the past director of the Museum and writer of ghost stories, M.R. James.

What is the story of the jockey seen in the famous painting of the racehorse Gimcrack by George Stubbs? Who was the reclusive collector of arms and armour, coins and medals, manuscripts and printed books, who bequeathed his collections to the Fitzwilliam Museum in 1933? Who was the spy who owned a painting now in the Fitzwilliam? What is the connection between the Museum and the chemist shop opposite it in Trumpington Street?

The Hidden Histories: Names and Faces website provides the opportunity to browse by name, object or themes such as 'Adventure', 'Love' and 'Scandal'. There is an online exhibition, with contributions from artists and writers who have been inspired or influenced by objects in the Museum.

You are also invited to post new hidden histories, telling us stories behind other objects in the Museum or how the collections have inspired you. Hidden Histories: Names and Faces is a celebration of the rich connections between people and 'things' - not just how objects reflect the history of a nation, but what they mean to individuals and the personal stories that they tell.

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