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Turret clock

The oldest clock in the collection of the Historical Museum of the City of Kraków is a tabletop turret clock. The name of this type of originates comes from their form, which resembles the shapes of a miniature church tower. The rectangular, brass housing of the clock mechanism was engraved, gilded and placed on a pedestal.

Tower table clock

The diverse form and rich ornamentation of the clock place it among the best works of the Augsburg watchmakers of the turn of the 16th and 17th centuries.

Tournament armour

The tournament armour is compiled of several suits of West-European armours created in the mid-16th century. Its basic parts are the cuirass, collarbone guard, and pads and thigh guards made by the best armourers from southern Germany. The breastplate with the fishbone and goose — that is a protrusion in the stomach area — has vertical stripes with an etched motif of a floral twig entwined over a panoply and musical instruments.

Tile table clock

For many years, it was believed to be the oldest of the Polish table clocks, called tile clocks for their flat cases. However, the engraved date An 1607 should be regarded as a later addition, contrary to the dates of the life and activity of Simon Ginter, who signed the clock.

The hoard with iron axe-like bars (“grzywna”) from 13 Kanonicza Street in Kraków

This treasure was found during rescue investigations in the basements of the backyard annex at 13 Kanonicza Street in Kraków in 1979. The deposit fell under the core of the early medieval bank of Okol. It was hidden in a pit measuring 108 x 210 cm, at a depth of about 100 cm, under walls partially covered with oak and fir wood...

Spear of the Lombards

The presented spear could have been forged either in the fifth or fifteenth century. In spite of the metallurgical examination carried out by specialists from the Jagiellonian University, it was not possible to determine the production date of the spearhead.

Secretive Wawel padlock

A secret padlock with a square diameter shackle, two movable pillars, and a cover over the keyhole. The padlock has three keys and protection against thieves in the form of a latch with a serrated blade hidden inside the padlock. After pressing the handle, the blade is released.

Sculpture “Jesus Christ Sitting on the Palm Sunday Donkey”

The sculpture, coming from the parish church of St. Sigismund in Szydłowiec, constitutes an extraordinary dramatic exhibit used during processions of going to church on Palm Sunday as to a symbol of Jerusalem. Christ, in a firmly upright position, is raising his right hand in a gesture of blessing.

Pharmaceutical tablet maker machine

Today, it seems obvious that we take tablets in their current form. Pharmaceutical companies scramble to launch the most convenient form of a particular drug on the market. Pharmacy was an experimental field in the times we are transported to by the pharmacy exhibition in the house with a turret in the town of Biecz. Pharmacists were not limited to prescriptions and selling ready-made medicines. They also created them. In rooms often referred to as alchemists’ workshops, mysterious mixtures were created, which did not always serve the health of their subsequent users...

Pharmaceutical scale with Asclepius

The base of the scales is a wooden box with three drawers, covered with a marble top. The arms of the scales are made of coloured metal and hung on a zinc-aluminium statue of the god of medicine, Asclepius.

Painted dowry chest

Na podstawie ogólnej analizy można stwierdzić, że prezentowana malowana skrzynia posagowa spełnia wymogi kanonu skrzyń wadowickich. Skrzynia ma kształt pudła z wiekiem, a jej malatura jest wykonana w czterech kolorach: białym, żółtym, czerwonym i ciemnozielonym stanowiącym tło. Ściana frontowa posiada dwa pola zdobnicze w formie kwadratów; uproszczone motywy roślinne.

Painted dowry chest

Dowry chests used to be an inseparable element of the furnishings of almost every house. They were often passed down from generation to generation, repainted, renovated, and in time considerably differed in the colour and ornamentation of their original appearance. Time, fashion, and also wardrobes which were cheaper and cheaper and consequently more accessible, were their enemies. Cheap chests were usually made of softwood, which was often attacked by insects.

Orava painted chest

The presented object is a high, dark green chest, resting on four profiled legs with a drawer at the bottom. The front wall is decorated with a painted pattern of vertical rectangles with concavely incised corners, separated from the background by a honey colour and a narrow burgundy red frame.

Oil mining lamp

The earliest source of confirmation regarding use of oil lamps in the Wieliczka Mine dates back to the beginning of the 16th century, but there are no exact data on the shape and material from which they were made. Probably, two types of oil lamps were used: clay – to be held in the hand or adapted to be placed on a flat surface; and metal – with a hook for carrying and hanging, connected with a container for tallow. The shapes of both types are similar – pear-shaped and vertical.

Mining weight

A weight for the town mining scales, once standing on the market square in Olkusz. The ore and melted metal were weighed on it to calculate the tax due to the crown treasury.

Laboratory press

Prasa apteczna tłokowa służyła do wytłaczania (expressio) surowców roślinnych, wymagających dużej siły nacisku. Otrzymywano w ten sposób soki z owoców, liści i korzeni lub oleje z nasion. Prasa tłokowa składała się z drewnianej podstawy, do której przytwierdzony był...

Hutsul cane “kełef”

A solid wooden cane topped by a brass handle; an exhibit in the Seweryn Udziela Ethnographic Museum in Kraków, inventory number 15457/MEK. It has often been displayed during many on-site and off-site exhibitions, and published in descriptions and photographs; on a day-to-day basis, it is stored meticulously wrapped in acid-free paper in a cardboard box on a shelf in a depository of the Museum's collections. It is quite valuable as it is one of only four similar items, the so-called kełefs, in the Museum's collection.

Hungarian-style horse mill

The Hungarian-style horse mill was the best machine for the vertical transportation of salt. It was able to lift loads that weighed over 2 tonnes from a depth greater than 300 m. It was an improved version of the Saxon-style horse mill implemented by Austrians after the First Partition of Poland. Since 1861 it was replaced by steam engines and after 1913 by electrical machines.

Hoshi kabuto helmet with shikami decoration

The collection of military items from the Far East in the National Museum in Kraków includes over one thousand exhibits, from which the most numerous are Japanese works. Armours and helmets belong to extremely valuable specimens and although they mostly come from the Edo period (1603–1868), we can admire the Japanese masters’ superb craftsmanship in them.

Horse-drawn train

The first, and quite numerous, projects of railway transport in the Wieliczka salt mine were designed around the mid-19th century; however, they were never implemented because of the enormous costs of drift reconstruction. Only in 1857 did the board devise the first precise plan for this challenging enterprise and the first works commenced. In 1861 the first metal rails were installed and after that almost all transport in the mine was conducted by wagons with metal boxes or horses pulling platforms.