English literature

The Museum's collection provides rich source material for creative writing and contextual studies.


We are strong in Renaissance objects, including early timepieces such as sundials and astrolabes, and 18th- and 19th-century objects including optical instruments such as telescopes and microscopes.

A wonderful collection of cameras includes Lewis Carroll’s photographic developing equipment, T.E. Lawrence’s (Lawrence of Arabia) archaeological camera, and Victorian optical devices such as the magic lantern and moving image toys.

Previous groups have visited the Museum for contextual study of novels such as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels.

Learn more about our Science and Frankenstein online workshop and resources

The Museum and its collection also create an atmosphere reminiscent of children’s books such as Phillip Pullman’s trilogy His Dark Materials, J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter stories, and Tom’s Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce.