Zimbabwe Museum of Human Sciences
Zimbabwe Museum of Human Sciences: A Cultural Chronicle
The Zimbabwe Museum of Human Sciences, once known as the Queen Victoria Museum, is a museum located in Harare, Zimbabwe. This museum is particularly notable for housing the seven-hundred-year-old Lemba artifact, ngoma lungundu, believed by some to be a replica of the biblical Ark of the Covenant. This artifact is the oldest wooden object ever discovered in sub-Saharan Africa.
The ngoma lungundu holds significant cultural importance for the Lemba people—black Africans who claim Jewish ancestry. The Lemba people suggest that this vessel was constructed nearly seven centuries ago, using remnants of the original Ark, which, according to biblical accounts, was used to store Moses' 10 Commandments. For many years, this ancient artifact was thought to be lost until its rediscovery in a Harare storeroom.
Tudor Parfitt, the individual who rediscovered the artifact in 2007, suggested that it could potentially be the oldest wooden object ever found in sub-Saharan Africa. He noted, "On each corner there is the remnants of a wooden ring, and obviously at one point, it was carried by inserting poles through these two rings on either side. Of course in the biblical account, that's precisely how the Ark of the Covenant was carried across the wilderness."
The Zimbabwe Museum of Human Sciences is situated at the Civic Centre, Rotten Row, CY 33, Causeway Harare, Zimbabwe, in the area known as Harare Central, near Samora Machel Avenue. According to the Zimbabwe Embassy, this museum houses a library, exhibition galleries, a model Shona Village, ethnographic and archaeological collections, and a public gallery of African Modern Art displaying wildlife exhibits.
For Residents: Adults: $3.00 Children: $1.00
For Non-Residents: Adults: $10.00 Children: $5.00
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