Carthage Musuem has enormous potential. When will it achieve it?

RASHMEE ROSHAN LALL December 27, 2015

Carthage_Museum - unfinished spaceIf you’re visiting Carthage, it’s considered appropriate to start at the Museum, on the peak of Byrsa Hill and with a spectacular view of the Gulf of Tunis.

Tunisia’s Ministry of Culture boasts: “…this museum contains the largest collection of objects from the site of Carthage and covers the Phoenician-Punic, the Roman-African and the Arab-Moslem periods.”

Yes. Sans context. Or explanation. Or a chronological chart for the lay visitor to make sense of what they’re seeing.


3rd century AD – the Egyptian influence is apparent



From the 6th century BC

The collection looks like it’s in temporary housing. The displays seem as if they were unfinished attempts at a narrative and that the storyteller gave up halfway through.

It’s fair to say that the Museum hasn’t done a great job of telling the story to the lay visitor. But it’s still worth a visit, if only to puzzle over the treasures within.

(Tomorrow: The Acropolium, Carthage. African ambition; relics of Crusader zeal)

Jack Kerouac

“Our battered suitcases were piled on the sidewalk again; we had longer ways to go. But no matter, the road is life”
– Jack Kerouac