By the Numbers: Penn Museum artifacts

Numbers - story

Steve Minicola

Since its founding in 1887, the Penn Museum has collected nearly 1 million objects, many obtained directly through its own field excavations or anthropological research. The Museum’s vast and varied collections serve as a resource to the Penn community and researchers from all over the world.

In this edition of By The Numbers, we hold a piece of history with Penn Museum Artifacts.


Age of the mummy located at the entrance to the Egyptian Mummy exhibition.


Length, in feet, of the diameter and height of the Chinese Rotunda, which houses one of the finest collections of monumental Chinese art in the country.


Approximate number of individuals, in various states of preservation, in the Museum’s Physical Anthropology Section.


Approximate weight, in pounds, of the Museum’s Sphinx, the third-largest known sphinx in the world.


Approximate number of clay tablets inscribed in Sumerian and Akkadian cuneiform in the Museum’s Babylonian Section, making it one of the 10 largest such collections in the world.


Number of Egyptian and Nubian materials at the Museum, one of the largest collections in the United States.


Year in which the Museum began acquiring prehistoric European archaeological collections.


Approximate number of artifacts the Museum holds from the Levant, a geographical area encompassing modern Israel, the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon, and adjacent parts of Syria.

Originally published on December 13, 2012