Astronomical table clock (detail), second quarter 17th century. German, Augsburg. Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917.
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Prepare to Be Amazed: “Making Marvels” Is Now at The Met

The Museum’s new exhibition offers a fascinating glimpse into the royal collections of early modern Europe

During the period between 1550 and 1750, nearly every royal family in Europe endeavored to assemble vast collections of exquisite and entertaining objects to convey their power, status, and wealth. Making Marvels: Science and Splendor at the Courts of Europe, the first exhibition of its kind to be presented in North America, highlights this remarkable intersection of art, science, and technology in the royal courts.

Automaton clock in the form of Diana on her chariot, ca. 1610. Gilt bronze and silver; dials: enamel; case: ebony and gilt bronze; movement: iron and brass.


Featuring some 170 objects—automata, clocks, scientific instruments, jewelry, paintings, and much more—the exhibition boasts many exceptional loans, including the flawless Dresden Green Diamond, silver furniture from the Esterházy Treasury, and a reconstruction of a late 18th-century semi-automaton chess player, known as “The Turk” (famed because it once caught Napoleon Bonaparte cheating). Many of these works have never before been seen in the United States.

A look inside “Making Marvels”


Gallery after gallery of the exhibition is filled with a beguiling array of unexpected delights. We don’t want to spoil any surprises for you, but one additional standout to be on the lookout for, particularly for fans of The Invention of Hugo Cabret, is The Draftsman Writer,” a late 18th-century writing automaton.

“The Draftsman Writer,” as seen in “Making Marvels”


Inspired by the incredible objects in the exhibition, we created a marvelous selection of intriguing gifts to accompany the show, including publications, tees, scarves, pins, office supplies, and more, both in-store and online.

Exhibition-related items from "Making Marvels" (clockwise): Timepiece Glass Coasters, Celestial Watch, Zodiac Chart Neckerchief, Dürer Rhinoceros Tee

Exhibition-related items from “Making Marvels” (clockwise): Timepiece Glass Coasters, Celestial Watch, Zodiac Chart Neckerchief, Dürer Rhinoceros Tee


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