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Wardlaw Museum - what is there to see?

Gallery 1: Scotland’s First University

In 1413 a Bull of Foundation was secured from the Pope, confirming the foundation of Scotland’s first university in St Andrews. Over the centuries the University has embraced challenge and welcomed modernisation, including standing at the forefront of the campaign for a University education for women.  Featuring iconic objects including the university’s medieval maces alongside a Raisin Weekend costume collected in 2017, this gallery explores not only the history but the distinctive identity, sense of community, and student life of a university that embraces the full experience of living and learning.

Gallery 2: Enquiring Minds

Teaching and learning are central to any university, and this gallery focusses on the ways that models, instruments, artefacts and specimens have been used to investigate, record, and see things differently. The displays draw from across art and science, and feature at the centre a stunning display of microscope slides and butterflies.

Gallery 3: Reformers and Innovators

For more than 600 years, the University has drawn pioneering individuals to St Andrews to research and to learn. Groundbreaking discoveries, inventions, and ideas developed here have had a lasting impact on Scotland, and have changed the world. This gallery brings together objects relating to themes as diverse as photography, the development of LEDs, and the Reformation, to encourage visitors to think about those moments when new ideas can change everything.

Gallery 4: Expanding Horizons

Curiosity and a desire to investigate the unknown have inspired St Andrews staff, students and residents. Featuring objects collected from around the world, specimens from pioneering research into life in the deep oceans in the 1870s, and lunar rock samples sent from NASA to St Andrews in the 1970s for expert analysis, this gallery shows how St Andrews has always been global, and has contributed to an expanding and changing understanding of the human world, the natural world and the universe.