London, United Kingdom
September 15, 2002
This is a touchy-feely museum which brings the medieval world of the international Hansa traders alive. From the moment you step into the first room, onto a giant map of Europe, you are brought face to face with the reality of trade. You can touch the furs and wool, and even the dried stock-fish, although I declined that pleasure. You can pull out sections of barrels showing the towns they traded with, and dig into the mysteries of ship construction. You hear the sounds of a medieval marketplace. There is the usual assortment of weapons and instruments of torture traditional to castles, and a wooden scale model of the town built by schoolchildren in 1934 when Hitler had the tower renovated as a symbol of traditional German independence. Most of the captions are in German, but there is an English summary in every room, and it isn’t difficult to understand what is on show.
This is a concise, enjoyable museum, which won’t wear you out, and leaves you feeling a little better informed.
From journal First impressions