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A unique aspect our museum collection today is that it contains substantial and important collections from western and central Europe as well as Scandinavia.

Frederick Horniman was an avid collector of European material, acquiring examples of items which were in danger of being lost as a result of industrialisation and urbanisation. From 1901 - 1947, little European material entered the Museum.

Since then, donations from England, Romania and the Balkans amongst others have greatly enhanced the collections. Notable among these collections are extensive holdings of textiles, costume, wooden utensils, paintings on glass, agricultural and domestic implements and masks from Romania, Poland, Norway and the Tyrol region.