A New Name for the Harvard Semitic Museum
The Harvard Semitic Museum will now be known as the Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East (HMANE). The new name is designed to be more inclusive and accurately reflect the diversity of the museum’s collection.
Founded in 1889, the museum was conceived as a teaching tool to study the ancient histories and cultures of people who spoke Semitic languages, among them Israelites, Moabites, Arabs, Babylonians, and Phoenicians.
The museum’s focus remains on the wide variety of diverse peoples living in the eastern Mediterranean region, parts of modern-day Iraq, and even of north Africa, including the Egyptians, Assyrians, Hittites, and Philistines.
Read an interview with director Peter Der Manuelian for a full explanation of the name change.
Watch for the continuing transition to Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East in the museum’s online presence and public outreach.
How to use the Virtual Tour
Museum Temporarily Closed to Public
Health and Safety Update
We continue to monitor the evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and prioritize the safety of our visitors, staff, students and volunteers. In the interests of reducing the number of people on campus and slowing the opportunity for transmission, the university museums are closing to the public, at the end of business on Thursday, March 12 until further notice. All public programs, classes, and events have been canceled. Over the next few weeks we will be assessing the situation and reviewing options for when we will be able to re-open to the public.
From Harvard Square
The museum has created 3D models of some choice objects from its collections. This peg-shaped, stone figurine would have been placed in the foundation of an important structure as it was being built. You can view more of our models here.