I went to the British Library this evening and spent about an hour and a half wandering through stacks of books and galleries. On display were music works from Handel, Motzart, Beethoven, Stavinski, and Chopin. Early British literature collections included the Tale of Beowulf, and pieces by Dickens, Jane Austin, and Sir Walter Raleigh. Galileo’s original telescope plans and observation notebook had a corner of their own. Countless ancient religious scrolls and texts were also displayed, some dating back to the Byzantine Era. I also got to view the Articles of the Barron, which preceded the Magna Carta, as well as 2 of the 4 original Magna Cartas, composed in 1215. Additionally, there was a science exhibit in which diagrams explained the human genome and to what degree we are closely related to other animal kingdoms. The Philatelic collection was a series of over 200 sliding panels displaying old bank notes, postage stamps and official trade documents from the industrial era of the world (late 17 early 18 hundreds).
Finally, the main feature of library was the royal collection of books, called The King’s Tower, comprising of six stories of ancient royal books, including the original Gutenberg Bible. The tower ran through the middle of the library in the center, making it the feature of the building. The books are encased in a special glass U-V light and temperature controlled rooms, kind of like the security used in National Treasure to protect the Declaration of Independence (James Bond style).
Oh, the other day, we drove past the touristy spots where the character Sherlock Holmes was created, the film set location for Diagon Alley in Harry Potter, and the original “Scotland Yard,” which is now a cobblestone street.