LGBT History at Museum of London

The Museum of London is a gem. It’s virtually on my doorstep and I feel embarrassed not have explored it until today.

This is my first post since I completed my Masters in Design Writing Criticism, and the event today at the Museum organised by Untold London was designed to activate my blogging skills, with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) history being the hook.

Our group of 15 bloggers were given some fundamental tips on successful blogging by Babs Guthrie, such as: writing in plain English, try not to use emoticons or multiple exclamation marks, and chunking (breaking up paragraphs into bite-size pieces). This was followed by a tour of the Museum where our guides Lucy Inglis the Museum of London’s blogger in residence and Kate Smith the Museum of London’s web manager and editor of the site Untold London opened our eyes to the LGBT stories and artifacts in the collections.

It surprised most of us, to discover while standing in front of a 2nd century AD Bronze head of the Roman Emperor Hadrian, that he had an eight year love affair with Antoninus. This story is a reminder that sexualities and relationships of all kinds are not just recent history.

Looking at the Museum of London’s collection through a LGBT filter, from the blame culture that followed in the aftermath of the Great Fire of London, to the fascinating court case of Princess Seraphina, has reinforced my desire to continue to further uncover LGBT histories and visit museums more often than I currently do.

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