Conservation and Science records
in the database

Information in the reports held on this database needs to be read with care. The reports were originally produced for internal purposes only, and were generally produced to address very specific issues. Much of the text is therefore specialised in nature and terminology.

It has not been possible to check every record prior to its release, therefore there may be mistakes and omissions.

The Museum does not endorse any of the equipment or products recorded here and it should be noted that any information about product formulations or health and safety advice given may no longer be current.

Attempts have been made to check these records, and every effort has been made to seek permission to reproduce all data, images, and personal information published here. However, if any material has inadvertently been included for which permission has not been granted, please contact or


Many of these records report work that was undertaken some years ago and the methods and materials described may not reflect current British Museum knowledge or practice.


These records were produced at different stages of the development of scientific understanding, instrumental accuracy and subtlety of interpretation and therefore they may not reflect current knowledge or practice. Analytical work undertaken today might not yield the same results or conclusions.

Criteria for public release of science records

The British Museum is committed to making its records of treatment, examination and analysis publicly accessible online. All science records are therefore being made available unless they fall into one or more of these categories:

  1. Data associated with objects examined under the Treasure Act 1996 and its predecessors or the Portable Antiquities Scheme
  2. Data associated with material in private ownership or collections other than that of the British Museum
  3. For a period of five years after they are received, data generated by external researcher(s) – More information
  4. Data associated with material examined in relation to acquisition, valuation or authenticity questions
  5. Projects that are incomplete and where existing material is not interpretable without further work.
  6. Projects that are subject to a duty of confidence
  7. Reports containing  information some of which may be otherwise exempt from disclosure under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act.