Brazil’s National Museum Engulfed by a massive Fire !

Brazil’s oldest and most important historical and scientific museum, Brazil’s National Museum has been consumed by a massive fire destroying much of its 20 million archived artifacts – losses were too great to be calculated

The museum, which is located in Rio de Janeiro, is a former a royal palace that was converted to a museum 200 years ago. It holds at least 20 million artifacts, with exhibitions in biological anthropology, archeology, ethnology, geology, paleontology and zoology, according to the museum’s website.

The loss of the National Museum’s collection is insurmountable for Brazil. Two hundred years of work, research and knowledge were lost, It’s a sad day for all

Michel Temer – Brazilian President, said in a tweet Sunday.

The museum has been hosting a series of events and activities to commemorate its bicentennial this year.
It is home to a variety of rare exhibits relating to the history of the Americas, including thousands of works from the pre-Colombian era, such as mummified Andean skeletons.

The fire broke out at about 7:30 p.m. in Rio, according to a statement from the Federal University of Rio De Janeiro, which manages the museum.  There were no reports of victims, the statement said. It wasn’t immediately clear how the fire began. The museum was part of Rio’s Federal University but had fallen into disrepair in recent years. Its impressive collections included items brought to Brazil by Dom Pedro I – the Portuguese prince regent who declared the then-colony’s independence from Portugal – Egyptian and Greco-Roman artefacts, “Luzia”, a 12,000 year-old skeleton and the oldest in the Americas, fossils, dinosaurs, and a meteorite found in 1784. Some of the archive was stored in another building but much of the collection is believed to have been destroyed. Burnt pages from documents housed in the museum have been found littering nearby neighbourhoods, according to a report on Brazil’s TV network Globo website.

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