Italian Honeymoon Pt. 3 – La Specola Zoological Collection

Just beyond the tourist-swarmed Ponte Vecchio and past the Pitti Palace, a flight of stone stairs leads up into one of the oldest European science museums and the first Wunderkammer of the 17th century. Twenty-four rooms, all lined with beautiful floor-to-ceiling wood and glass cabinets, contain a vast collection of species from around the world. Many of the taxidermy pieces are notably newer, while others are charming reminders of how far the art of taxidermy has come – one example being the Medici family’s preserved pet hippopotamus which was laughably taxidermied by a man who had never seen one alive before. The museum also boasts a mount of the legendary thylacine, which was pronounced extinct in 1936.

La Specola was one of my favorite stops in Florence. We walked back through each room a total of three times because I couldn’t get enough of this place. I could gladly live in here.

5 comments on “Italian Honeymoon Pt. 3 – La Specola Zoological Collection

  1. So awesome – I love going to our city’s museum, it’s a nice mix of going “oooh that’s a cool animal” to “oooh that’s so creepy”. I love that a kookaburra made it’s way into your photos – one of the coolest birds, in my humble opinion!

  2. Pingback: La Specola Anatomical Wax Collection | Stuck with Pins

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