Your support: success stories
Dr John H Rassweiler

 Silver seal matrix set with a red jasper Roman intaglio showing the emperor Antoninus Pius

Silver seal matrix set with a red jasper Roman intaglio showing the emperor Antoninus Pius. Acquired with the assistance of Dr. John H. Rassweiler.

Dr John H. Rassweiler has for many years generously supported the care, research and public understanding of the museum’s outstanding collection of medieval seal matrices.

A seal matrix is a device used to make an impression into wax or other materials. In the Middle Ages these devices often carried the name of the owner, thus making the image which accompanied the name a bearer of great authority. In a period of decreased literacy, these objects provide key insights into life in this fascinating period of history.

Dr Rassweiler has helped this unique collection gain wider academic and public attention by contributing to exhibitions, publications, acquisitions and curatorial positions. In 2007 he supported both the exhibition and the conference proceedings of Good Impressions: Image and Authority in Medieval Seals. The exhibition featured magnificent seals owned by royalty, bishops and aristocrats, and placed them alongside the seals of cathedrals, monasteries and guilds to give an authoritative view of medieval life and identity.

Dr Rassweiler currently funds a project aimed at contextualising the museum’s collection of English seal matrices with recent archaeological finds across the Department of Britain, Europe and Prehistory.

More success stories

Gold Royal Geographical Society medal

Acceptance in Lieu

Medals awarded to Scott of the Antarctic, acquired through the Acceptance in Lieu Scheme.

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Special event at the Museum


The Museum’s most longstanding corporate partner, supporting the public programme since 1996.

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Curator talk at the Museum

John Lyon’s Charity

A unique project bringing young people and Museum curators together to explore objects.

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For more information about supporting the Museum, contact  or call +44 (0)20 7323 8933

White ink drawing based upon the architectural design of muqarnas

Maryam and Edward Eisler

Maryam and Edward Eisler provided significant funding to help the Museum expand its Middle East collection.

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 Samsung Digital Discovery Centre


A Digital Discovery Centre that enables children to bring world history to life through technology.

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A new building project transforming the way the Museum displays, studies and cares for its collection.

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Copper alloy radiate of Carausius, AD 286-293

Kenneth Day

A bequest from the estate of the late Mr Kenneth Day to the Department of Coins and Medals.

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Wolfson Foundation

The Lord Leonard and Lady Estelle Wolfson Foundation

Supporting accessible learning programmes at the British Museum

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