Bardo National Museum

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Bardo National Museum
  • المتحف الوطني بباردو
  • Musée national du Bardo
Bardo Museum - Carthage room.jpg
Carthage Room, Bardo National Museum (2005)
Location Tunis, Tunisia
Type National museum
Curator Taher Ghalia

The Bardo National Museum (Arabic: المتحف الوطني بباردو‎; French: Musée national du Bardo) is a museum located in Tunis, Tunisia.

Location and description[edit]

Plan des trois niveaux du musée à l’issue de la rénovation.
Bardo museum plan.
Salle de Carthage vue du deuxième étage avec les statues romaines et une mosaïque, ainsi que les arcades du palais.
Carthage Room.
Salle de Sousse avec plafond doré et mosaïques sur les murs ainsi que sur le sol.
Sousse Room.
Photographie de la salle de Virgile montrant la mosaïque de Virgile et le plafond de stuc richement sculpté du palais.
Virgile Room.
Salle d’Althiburos, ancienne salle de musique du palais avec une tribune et des mosaïques sur les murs et le sol.
d’Althiburos Room.

The museum's building was originally a 19th-century Bey's palace, located in the suburbs of Tunis.

The Bardo is one of the most important museums of the Mediterranean basin and the second on the African continent after the Egyptian Museum. It traces the history of Tunisia over several millennia and through many civilizations through a wide variety of archaeological pieces. Being in the former palace, it offers many major works discovered since the beginnings of archaeological research in the country. Originally called Museum Alaoui (المتحف العلوي), the name of the reigning bey at the time, it has had its current name of Museum of Bardo only since the country's independence.

In addition to famous works such as the Blue Koran of Kairouan, Blue Qur'an, the Islamic Department contains a collection of ceramics from North Africa and Asia Minor.

The Bardo brings together one of the finest and largest collections of Roman mosaics in the world thanks to the excavations undertaken from the beginning of the 20th century on archaeological sites in the country including Carthage, Hadrumetum, Dougga, or Utica. The mosaics represent a unique source for research on everyday life in Roman Africa. The Museum also contains a rich collection of marble statues representing the gods and Roman emperors found on various sites including those of Carthage and Thuburbo Majus.

The Bardo has also rich pieces discovered during the excavations of Libyco-Punic sites including mainly Carthage, although the Carthage National Museum also possesses an important collection. The main parts of this Department are grimacing masks, terracotta statues and stelae of major interest for the Semitic epigraphy, the stele of the priest and the child being the most famous. The Museum also houses Greek works discovered in particular in the excavations of the ship of Mahdia, whose iconic piece is a marble bust of Aphrodite.

The museum underwent a major refurbishment, completed in 2011, that was interrupted due to the Tunisian revolution.


Patio du Petit Palais avec une fontaine de marbre au milieu de la cour et une colonnade.
Small Patio of the Palace.

It contains a major collection of Roman mosaics and other antiquities of interest from Ancient Greece, Tunisia, and the Islamic period.

The museum displays objects ranging from pre-historical artefacts to modern jewellery.

2015 terrorist attack[edit]

On 18 March 2015, two gunmen attacked the museum and held hostages.[1] 20 civilians and one policeman were killed in the attack, while around 50 others were injured.[2] Five Japanese, two Colombians, and visitors from Italy, Poland, and Spain were among the dead. Both gunmen were killed by Tunisian police. The incident has been treated as a terrorist attack.[3][4]


See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°48′33.79″N 10°08′04.23″E / 36.8093861°N 10.1345083°E / 36.8093861; 10.1345083