20 February 2017
Monday 20 February - Saturday 10 June

The Collections Gallery, Open Treasure

An exhibition of the weird and wonderful beasts and monsters which have fascinated people from earliest times. From illustrations of lions and dragons in medieval manuscripts, to early printed books of natural history which feature sea serpents and wyverns alongside images of the rhinoceros or elephant, and the ‘evidence’ presented to prove the existence of such fantastic creatures as griffins and unicorns, this display will capture the imagination! 

Further items on display include a unicorn’s horn, griffin’s eggs and an elephant’s tooth, kindly loaned by Sunderland Museum & Winter Gardens, and what may have been one of the original griffin’s claws gifted to St Cuthbert in the early days of Durham Cathedral, on loan from the British Museum. 

Tickets: £2.50 - £7.50 available from the Visitor Desk in the Cathedral, the Open Treasure Welcome Desk, and in advance from

Please note that due to a major project taking place at the Cathedral, Open Treasure including Beasts, is closed to the public on Thursday 4 May (from noon), Friday 5 May, Saturday 6 May and Tuesday 9 May. 

We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.