Exhibitions, events, and heritage from home this autumn

There is a fantastic selection of historical and archaeological events on offer over the coming months, ranging from exhibitions exploring medieval armour and 19th-century anatomical study to local society conferences and symposiums. There are also still many different ways to get involved in history and heritage at home, with virtual tours of historical sites, podcasts, games, apps, and much more. Amy Brunskill has put together a summary of some of the options available.



Anatomy: A Matter of Death and Life

National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh
Until 30 October

This exhibition at the National Museum of Scotland examines 500 years of medical exploration and the social and medical history surrounding anatomical study and the dissection of human bodies in the past, from artistic explorations by Leonardo da Vinci to the Burke and Hare murders. Find out about the role anatomy played in the Enlightenment, and the links between science and crime in the early 19th century, and consider how this has impacted our approaches to anatomical study today. Tickets cost £10, with concession prices available.

Image: © National Museums Scotland.

The Lost King: imagining Richard III

The Wallace Collection, London
7 September 2022 – 8 January 2023

Richard III has long been a controversial figure, often portrayed as an arch-villain, a usurper, and a murderer, but some modern scholars argue that in many ways he was a capable and compassionate monarch. This new, free display will explore how key objects and staff at the Wallace Collection have influenced perceptions of Richard III today, as well as examining how he has been presented in cinema over the last century, in connection to the forthcoming film, The Lost King.


Lincolnshire Archaeology Conference

Welton Village Hall, Lincoln
8 October

www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/lincolnshire- archaeology-conference-tickets-316599817577

The Society for Lincolnshire History and Archaeology’s annual conference explores ‘Discoveries and Research from Lincolnshire and Beyond’. Talks include ‘Roman Settlement of the central Lincolnshire Wolds’, ‘The Trojan War as seen from Rutland’ (the Rutland Roman villa and mosaic), and more. The cost, including lunch and refreshments, is £25 for SLHA members and £32 for non-members. Tickets can be booked through Eventbrite or by post using the booking form at www.slha.org.uk/events. Bookings must be made before 24 September.


English Civil War Fortresses Symposium

The Town Hall Ballroom, Newark, Nottinghamshire
19 November

The Fortress Study Group and the Battlefields Trust are joining forces to present the first ever symposium dedicated to Civil War fortifications and sieges in England. The event will feature a selection of lectures showcasing the latest research and investigations on the subject, with a keynote speech from Professor Peter Gaunt. Tickets cost £30 for FSG or BT members or £40 for non-members, and include refreshments, lunch, and a guided tour of the Queen’s Sconce (the country’s best-preserved Civil War fortification). Numbers are limited, so book your place now.

Scottish Archaeology Month

Multiple locations
September and first half of October

Scottish Archaeology Month is back! The Archaeology Scotland initiative, which is a collaboration with Doors Open Days and part of the European Heritage Days, encourages people to interact with the country’s archaeology, history, and heritage through a varied programme of events across Scotland, including exhibitions, lectures, guided walks, performances, traditional-skills workshops, re-enactments, excavations, and much more. See p.61 for more details, and check out the website and the Twitter account (@ScotArchMonth) to see what’s on offer near you.


• National Museum of African American History and Culture, USA


The Smithsonian’s NMAAHC has released its second online exhibition, ‘Making a Way Out of No Way’, highlighting the resourcefulness and resilience of African American communities and individuals.

• The World of Stonehenge, UK


Enjoy a video tour of the British Museum’s recent exhibition, led by curators Jennifer Wexler and Neil Wilkin, and find out more about the people that built and lived around the time of Stonehenge.

• Persepolis, Iran


Explore the ancient Achaemenid city of Persepolis and see what it would have been like to walk its streets 2,500 years ago with this online experience produced by the Getty Museum.

Image: Wikimedia Commons, Laurens R. Krol.

• Hadrian’s Villa, Italy


Take a virtual tour around the Stadium Garden of Emperor Hadrian’s villa at Tivoli, led by Bernard Frischer, Director of the Digital Hadrian’s Villa Project, and see how the site would have looked in its prime.


• Chatterpast


This imaginary messaging programme allows children to chat with young characters from the Iron Age and Roman periods, and encourages discussions about our perceptions of the past.

• Dead Interesting: uncovering Roman Britain in old museum collections


Learn more about the archaeology and history of early Roman Britain, and Roman attitudes and practices surrounding death, in this online course from the University of Reading and Colchester Museums.

• Peopling the Past


Take a journey to the ancient Mediterranean with this podcast and find out more about the everyday lives of the real people who lived in ancient Greece, Rome, Egypt, and beyond.

IMAGE: Ingeborg Simon.

• Heritage Park Museum TikTok


Enjoy a selection of fun and informative videos from the Heritage Park Museum in Terrace, British Columbia, and discover more about the early Canadian settlers who lived in this area.


• Hyper Edohaku


Find out more about Japan’s history with this app from the Edo-Tokyo Museum, which allows you to explore 18th- to 19th-century Edo’s entertainment district and find objects from the museum’s collection.

Image: Wikimedia Commons, Kakidai.

• Making Stories


Try out a variety of story-making activities, from creating your own shadow puppet show to setting up a treasure hunt story, with these resources from Historic Environment Scotland.

• Ardal O’Hanlon: Tomb Raider


Join Ardal O’Hanlon as he travels to famous archaeological sites around Ireland and explores the story of an epic 1930s quest to find the origins of the earliest men and women on the island.

• Walking Wartime Britain


Learn more about Britain in the Second World War in this documentary series in which former Royal Marine Arthur Williams explores the country and discovers stories of inventors, spies, teenage miners, and more.

• The Crown Jewels


Discover the history and stories behind the Crown Jewels collected over centuries by British kings and queens, and find out what they can tell us about the UK’s history over the last millennium.