Set in a beautiful red-brick former convent, this is one of
Spain’s most enjoyable archaeological museums. Clearly laid-out exhibits trace the development of the Madrid region,
including natural history as well as human archaeology. Its saber-toothed tiger skull and mastodon jaw are around 10
million years old. An excellent collection of Roman mosaics and artifacts bears witness to the Roman conquest of the
area in the 1st century
B.C. Complutum, the only Roman city in the Madrid region, had 10,000 inhabitants. There is,

notably a wonderfully unsteady-looking statue of Bacchus in the
Jardín de Antigüedades. When Felipe II moved the
royal court to Madrid in 1561 it led to a rapid growth in the manufacture of brightly painted ceramic pots and plates,
some of which are evocatively preserved here.