The METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART occupies a site in Central Park, the imposing East Wing fronting on Fifth avenue, opposite Eighty-second street.
The metropolitan museum of art is a private corporation, founded in 1870 by a number of public-spirited citizens, and managed by a board of trustees. The Museum building was provided by the city. The Metropolitan is the largest and richest art museum in America; it is a vast storehouse of treasures in the several departments of the fine arts; all times and all peoples have contributed to it, and we shall find material for endless study. The most advantageous way to see the Museum is to make a series of visits, devoting each one to a particular collection or group. The province of the STANDARD GUIDE is to indicate only in the most general way the scope of the collection. Visitors should use the catalogues which are sold in the hall near the entrance; that of the paintings costs 20 cents; the others To cents each.
The central Grand Hall contains the WILLARD COLLECTION OF ARCHITECTURAL CASTS, reproducing details of the notable architecture of many periods. Conspicuous are the models, on a scale of one-twentieth of the original, of the Parthenon, the Pantheon, Notre Dame, and the Hypo-style Hall of Karnac. On the walls are two immense paintings, "Justinian in Council," by Benjamin-Constant, and "Diana's Hunting Party," by Makart.
SCULPTURAL PLASTER CASTS.—Halls 6 to II contain reproductions of sculpture. There are over Boo examples, beginning at a time 3,700 years B. C., and illustrating the development through the Egyptian, Assyrian, Persian, Greek, Roman and Mediaeval periods, and the Italian Renaissance. Here are the crude beginnings of antiquity and the noble works of the masters. Pheidias is represented by the sculptures of the Par¬thenon (Hall 8) and Praxiteles by his world-renowned Aphrodite (No. 34 in Hall rr). The Venus of Melos is in Hall II. In Hall 8 the Galatian Warrior, the Herakles ("Torso of the Belvedere"), and the Laokoon group. The portrait grave-monuments in Hall 8 have touching interest. "Archestrate greatly longed-for by her Husband" one is inscribed. In Hall 7 the Spinario, or Boy extracting a Thorn from his Foot always attracts attention.
The Italian Renaissance subjects are in Hall g, among them, Ghiberti's Door of the Baptistery at Florence Donatello's David "Gattamelata," and Judith and Holofernes. Luca della Robbia's Dancing and Playing Children; and Assumption of the Virgin, in Hall 2. Michel-Angelo's David (No. 118), Moses (No. 131), Captive, wearied or musing (No. 132) ; Captive struggling to burst his bond (No. 133), and the monumental figure of the Tombs of the Medici in Florence—"Night" and "Day," "Evening" and "Dawn," and the portrait statues of Giuliano and Lorenzo, the last known as "11 Pensiero" from the attitude of pro-found thought.
In Halls 2 and 3 of the metropolitan museum of art are wrought-iron work, bronzes and reproductions of bronzes. Macmonnies' Bacchante, which was intended for the Boston Public Library in the HALL OF SCULPTURE, where is shown the Museum's extensive collection of modern works. Among notable works are Ruckstuhl's Evening, Story's Medea, Cleopatra, and Semiramis; Bartlett's Bohemian Bear Tamer ; the Two Natures of Man; Harriet Hosmer's Zenobia; Roger's Ruth and Nydia; Millet's Ariadne; Prosper d'Epinay's Sappho, and many others.
In the halls devoted to EGYPTIAN ANTIQUITIES are sarcophagi and mummy-cases; mummies of human beings, crocodiles, cats and the ibis; sculptures, scarabs, amulets, textile fabrics, and objects illustrating the domestic life and mortuary customs of the Egyptians, extending to a period nearly 4,000 B. C. The CESNOLA COLLECTION OF CYPRIOTE ANTIQUITIES consists of thousands of objects exhumed on the island of Cyprus, comprising stone sculptures, pottery and glass. There is also, in the en-trance hall, the COLLECTION OF GLASS—Phoenician, Greek, Roman, Venetian and Florentine—which, with other glass, makes the Museum's collection unique and unrivalled. In other halls on the first floor are shown ancient armor, reproductions of bronze, and wood carvings.
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