The wonderful Natural History Museum at Oxford University is a must visit for science fans everywhere. But did you know about the important Irish links to the building?
The museum building was completed in 1860 and was designed by the Irish architects Thomas Newenham Deane (who was born in Cork) and Benjamin Woodward (who was born in Co. Offaly). Deane and Woodward also designed the museum at Trinity College, Dublin.
Statues of some of the greatest scientists, stand around the ground floor but much of the planned stone carving around the interior remains incomplete.
|O'Shea working on the Oxford museum|
Although they offered to do it for free, the university management accused them of "defacing" the building by doing some of this unauthorised work.
Some people suggested that the stone carvers responded by caricaturing the university management as parrots and owls in the carving over the main entrance. The carvers were forced to remove the heads and they remain headless to this day!