Born poor and nonconformist, Mary Anning’s contributions to the birth of palaeontology had been forgotten. But not any longer

A few months ago a stylish set of rooms were opened in London’s Natural History Museum. They include a restaurant, a study and a floor-to-ceiling cabinet displaying biological treasures and curiosities. Here, patrons of the museum gather to relax and contemplate nature’s wonders in a setting named after one of the most remarkable of all explorers of Earth’s ancient marvels: Mary Anning.

“We could have named the rooms after many ‘greats’: Alfred Waterhouse, who designed the museum, or David Attenborough. But in the end there was really only one choice. The Anning Rooms it had to be,” said museum executive Christina Heap.

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