Museo di Storia Naturale or The Museum of Zoology and Natural History, best known as La Specola, is an eclectic natural history museum in Florence. The name Specola means observatory, a reference to the astronomical observatory founded there in 1790. The collection of the oldest scientific Museum in Europe can be traced back to the Medici Family. It is known for its collection of extremely life-like wax anatomical models from the 18th century, zoological subjects (such as a stuffed hippopotamus (a 17th-century Medici pet, which once lived in the Boboli Gardens), but also a collection of anatomical waxes and mineralogical items with some of the world’s largest crystals as well as great educational materials on geology and palaeontology.