The Museum of the Order of St. John: A History of Caring


There’s a soft side to every bloody saga. Showcasing centuries-old suits of armor among other wartime artifacts, the Museum of the Order of St. John highlights a thousand-year-old group of military medics that makes for an enlightening yet engaging family day. Your kids will most likely flock to the displays of chain mail and steel plate helmets, but the focus of this museum is not fierce warriors, but rather the people who tended to their battle wounds. Though the sanguine elements deal mostly with blood-letting and leeches, the order’s emergence from the tumult of the crusades carries with it some fascinating pictures of life in ancient Jerusalem. Crusade-era artifacts, gilded portraits of Jesus, numerous wartime medals and portraits portray the organization’s efforts. Modern uniforms, first responder bikes, and maps charting St. John’s current global involvement (it runs an ambulance brigade, among other things) may just spark your child’s altruistic side, especially when they see the spiffy outfits afforded to junior volunteers. Make sure to tour the stately meeting rooms scattered around the area spread throughout the 500-year-old St. John’s Gate, which hosts the museum. A wartime museum of a different caliber, you and your family will have plenty to discuss about how caring and compassion factor in to our day-to-day lives.

The Museum of the Order of St. John

St. John St London EC1M 4DA

44 20 7324 4005

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