The Keats-Shelley House in Rome officially opened as a museum in 1909 and, more than a century later, continues to attract visitors from all over the world. Many who come are already well-acquainted with the work of Keats and his fellow Romantics. Others are simply spurred by their curiosity about this handsome historic house in the heart of this splendid city. Whatever their reason for coming, all, I’m delighted to say, will discover something wonderful, be it our fine collection of paintings and portraits, busts and miniatures, relics and first editions, manuscripts and letters, or our extensive library which has proved invaluable to many scholars and writers over the years.
We are working hard to improve our visitors’ overall experience and to secure the building’s future. As part of this process, we have recently restored the house’s exterior and spacious terrace, which now host special events and provide an excellent place for visitors to relax in. There is also an ongoing need to revitalise the interior of the building and its exquisite collections, and we are presently making improvements to our showcases and conditions throughout the museum in order to host more temporary exhibitions and to play a stronger part on the national and international museum scene. All of this requires funds, but as a British museum abroad we receive no public funding from the UK. We therefore rely on the generosity of donors and on revenue from visitors, most notably from our beautiful gift shop which opened in 2010 and which was made possible, alongside vital restorative projects, by our enormously successful Centenary Appeal. However, we must never rest on our laurels, and in order to safeguard the museum’s longevity and prosperity, we always warmly welcome donations, which, however, large or small, will see that future generations continue to enjoy and to learn from it.
The Keats-Shelley House is a truly special place. But we need your help to ensure that it survives and thrives for many, many more years to come.