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  Right in the heart of Benin City, Nigeria, there’s a special place called the Benin City National Museum. It’s like a time machine that takes you on a journey through the amazing history of the region. Found on what was once called King’s Square (now Oba Ovonramwen Square), this museum is all about preserving and sharing the rich culture of Benin.
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In 1973, the museum opened its doors to everyone, thanks to the National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM). Since then, it’s been keeping watch over Nigeria’s history, dazzling visitors with its cool collections and fun exhibitions. The museum’s location is pretty cool too. It used to be known as King’s Square but was renamed Oba Ovonramwen Square to honour Benin’s royal history. This name change shows how important the museum is for celebrating Benin’s past and present.
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Once inside the museum, get ready for a trip back in time! You’ll see all sorts of cool stuff from the Benin Empire and even further back. There are amazing sculptures, shiny bronze figures, and even old iron pieces. Each item tells a story of the talented people who lived here long ago, keeping their legacy alive. But that’s not all. The museum also focuses on ancient art from way back when. You’ll find beautifully carved masks and delicate pottery, each piece showing off the incredible skills of the Benin people. It’s like stepping into a time capsule, where every artefact has a tale to tell. And guess what? The museum isn’t just about looking at cool stuff. It’s also a place to learn! They have guided tours, workshops, and programs for people of all ages. You can dive deeper into Nigeria’s history and culture and even get involved in scholarly research if that’s your thing.
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Final Thoughts

In a nutshell, the Benin City National Museum is a treasure trove of culture and history. From its humble beginnings in 1973 to its important role today, it’s a place that inspires and educates everyone who walks through its doors. As Nigeria moves ahead into the future, this museum stands as a guardian of its rich cultural identity, ensuring that the stories of its ancestors live on for generations to come.
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This article was first published on 23rd March 2024 and updated on March 24th, 2024 at 8:13 pm


Chidiogo Shalom Akaelu holds a degree in English and Literary Studies, from the University of Nigeria. She is a freelance writer, editor and founder of Loana Press, a budding online publishing outlet.

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