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Main Principals

This is the production release of the British Museum's linked data and SPARQL endpoint service using the CIDOC CRM ontology. It contains the data for over 2 million objects and provides one or more images for over 750,000 records. If you experience any issues please send a mail to:

Web@britishmuseum.org

Linked Data

All British Museum URIs start with HTTP and are within the domain collection.britishmuseum.org. We have attempted to map fields from our collections system to URIs which follow a pattern in the url structure which is demonstrated below.

Sparql Endpoint

The sparql endpoint allows querying of the triple store. The queries can be made in 2 ways:

  • navigating to /Sparql and subitting queries via the editor
  • HTTP-GET requests to http://collection.britishmuseum.org/Sparql (RESTful API

A simple query for the Rosetta Stone is

SELECT *
WHERE {
<http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/object/YCA62958> ?p ?o .
}

This creates the URL

http://collection.britishmuseum.org/sparql?query=SELECT+*%0D%0AWHERE+{%0D%0A++++%3Chttp%3A%2F%2Fcollection.britishmuseum.org%2Fid%2Fobject%2FYCA62958%3E+%3Fp+%3Fo+.%0D%0A}+LIMIT+100&_implicit=false&implicit=true&_equivalent=false&_form=%2Fsparql

http://collection.britishmuseum.org/sparql.xml?query= returns xml (in the browser this is a downloadable file)

http://collection.britishmuseum.org/sparql.json?query= returns json

DESCRIBE <http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/object/YCA62958>

Returns the first level of the Rosetta stone graph and is the equivalent of http request

http://collection.britishmuseum.org/sparql?query=describe+%3Chttp%3A%2F%2Fcollection.britishmuseum.org%2Fid%2Fobject%2FYCA62958%3E+%0D%0A%0D%0A&_implicit=false&implicit=true&_equivalent=false&_form=%2Fsparql

As will be seen when queries are submitted via the editor, the URL will define the parameters to the service:

  • Query: The SPARQL Query
  • The Endpoint is CORS compliant and therefore available through JavaScript calls from a browser.

    The same results can be achieved by submitting a header (Accept) in the request:

    • Sparql Results XML (Content Type: application/sparql-results+xml): Accept: application/sparql-results+xml
    • Sparql Results JSON (Content Type: application/sparql-results+json): Accept: application/sparql-results+json

    URI Representation Structure

    Collection Object

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/{object_identifier}

    Thesaurus Term

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/thesauri/{term_identifer}

    Biography (People / Institutions)

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/person-institution/{person/institution_identifer}

    Bibliography

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/bibliography/{bibliography_identifer}

    Departmemt

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/department/{department_identifier}

    Units

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/units/{unit_identifier}

    Dimension

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/dimension/{dimension_identifier}

    CIDOC-CRM Ontology

    http://erlangen-crm.org/current/{resource}

    British Museum Ontology Extensions

    http://collection.britishmuseum.org/id/ontology/{resource}