Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 41.djvu/65

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Museums of ethnography are far more common in Europe than with us. There are, perhaps, no large cities without such an institution, and many small towns have fine collections. In the little kingdom of Holland alone there are fully a half-dozen ethnographic museums of importance, the chief one being at Leyden. This city is the main educational town of Holland, and

PSM V41 D065 J D E Schmeltz.jpg
Dr. J. D. E. Schmeltz.

its university, always famous for its corps of teachers, still holds its rank as a finely manned institution of learning. Besides the university, the town boasts of one of the best museums of antiquities in the world, particularly rich in Egyptian and Javanese objects, and the ethnographic museum, which in some respects is unsurpassed. Like many of the great collections in Europe, the latter is unfortunate in its housing. The part usually shown to visitors comprises the wonderfully rich collections from the South seas and the East Indies. These are in exceedingly crowded and ill-lighted quarters, and a satisfactory display is impossible in the present building. The African collections are in a second building as little suited to display as the first, and the rich series from Asia are stored in yet a third building. It is much to be desired that this collection might be brought together under one roof in a building of suitable character and well lighted and suitably cased. We have already referred to the wonderful series of objects from the South seas and the Indies. Many of them, brought home by the early navigators, are old, and represent the native arts before they were affected by white influence. Especially fine are the carved work, weapons, armor, and articles of dress and adornment. New Guinea is finely represented by objects from different parts, well illustrating the local variation in arts. The specimens from Sumatra, Engano, Nias, Borneo, and Java illustrate the whole life of the natives. The collection of krises, or dirks, is probably the largest in the world, and many of the specimens are masterpieces of metal-work, and the hilts and sheaths are crusted with precious stones. Dr. Serrurier, the