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19th-century Expansions

Very soon after Teylers Museum opened, the Oval Room became too small for the new collections and the many activities. In 1826, a new wing opened, with two rooms for lectures and the geology collection on the ground floor, and upstairs, a Reading Room with library. The ground-floor rooms served, successively, as a palaeontology museum, demonstration room and picture gallery. These are now furnished as exhibition space for the Numismatic Collection and the Prints Cabinet.

Reading Room

Starting in 1826, the new Reading Room was open to the public. Scholars, intellectuals and other interested individuals were happy to make use of it. With their admission ticket, they would come to study the latest and most valuable books, acquired especially for students and researchers lacking financial means. The botanical books are now behind the green curtains: all available knowledge about plants from the 17th to the end of the 20th century.

Reading room
Reading room

Numismatic Cabinet

This room was once intended for the geology, fossil and rock collection. In 1888, it became the Numismatic Cabinet. The rocks were moved to a different room, and this room was newly furnished with display cases and drawers for coins, medals and medallions. The numismatic collection was accessible to everyone from then on. Visitors could open the drawers to discover historical treasures on their own, without appointment. Most of the pieces are now kept in a safe and a selection can be seen in the display cases, including a few highlights.

Numismatic cabinet
Print room

Print Room

This windowless space designed for lectures and demonstrations was later fitted with paintings. However, due to its poor lighting, the paintings were moved to the new Picture Gallery in 1838. Only prints and drawings are exhibited here today, because works of art on paper do not tolerate daylight. Since 1996, the room satisfies all climate and light requirements for works on paper, which are on temporary display due to their vulnerability. Many masterpieces can nevertheless be seen close up in reproduction in the First Picture Gallery.

First Picture Gallery

In 1838, Teylers Museum got a room for ‘contemporary’ art: all of the paintings here were made at the end of the 18th century or in the first half of the 19th century. The arrangement of the room is also contemporary and reflects the taste of the Romantic cultural movement in the Netherlands. The paintings are hung in rows above each other, symmetrically arranged across the wall. Visitors can also get to work on their own: the cabinets hold folders with drawings and prints that can be studied at the table.

Second Picture Gallery

In the 19th century, the collection of paintings grew so quickly a second exhibition room was necessary. The room was completed in 1893. The work of living Dutch artists, of the Hague School, among others, found a home here. Rows of paintings, one above the other, were no longer fashionable, as they had been at the time of the First Picture Gallery: space and calm dominate here. The monumental seating invites one to slow down and observe.

Sixty years after the extra wing had opened in 1826, Teylers Museum again needed to expand. The ‘New Museum’, which opened in 1885. The monumental facade by Christian Ulrich, facing the Spaarne, lends Teylers Museum metropolitan allure, with beautiful decorations referencing the arts and sciences. The interior by Adrianus van der Steur Jr. comprises three new rooms: two for fossils and one for scientific instruments. Upstairs a Lecture Room and a second library, the Opkamer, or upstairs room, were added.

Second Picture Gallery
Second Picture Gallery

Second Picture Gallery

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Spaarne 16, 2011 CH Haarlem

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