Museu Nacional de Arqueologia

Founded in 1893 by Dr. José Leite de Vasconcelos (1881-1941), an internationally-famous Portuguese ethnologist and philologist, the museum is installed in part of the old (16th century) Jerónimos Monastery, a key monument of the Portuguese Discoveries classified as a World Heritage site by UNESCO.

Its huge, rich collection is an essential reference for anyone wishing to learn about the various stages of human development in the territory that is now Portugal, from the most ancient times (it has one of the largest Mesolithic and Megalithic collections in Europe), to the influences of Phoenician and Greek traders and seafarers attracted by the legendary riches of this finisterre, to the great Roman and Arab civilisations, whose long presence here has left ample evidence of the way they organised their social and political life.

The diversity of its collections - archaeology, ethnography, epigraphy, numismatics - makes it possible to organise constant temporary exhibitions, where a theme is chosen and comprehensively presented in context so that it can be better appreciated culturally by the public.

The permanent exhibition consists of the Treasures of Portuguese Archaeology, a real gem that shows us the everlasting fascination of gold, and a smaller but rich Egyptian Antiquities section.


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