Nightingale's lamp goes on display

It was the lantern that cast a reassuring light over wounded British soldiers during the Crimean War. Now the lamp that earned Florence Nightingale her title of "the lady with the lamp" will be back on display in London.

The lantern, used during the nightly rounds of the wards in Scutari, will be exhibited at the Florence Nightingale Museum which re-opens next month after a £1.4m revamp.

"The image of her holding such a lamp gave rise to the legend of a guardian angel of the troops," says Kirsteen Nixon, curator of the museum. Situated in the grounds of St Thomas's Hospital in London where Nightingale founded her nursing school, the museum features a range of objects associated with her life and work.

She was born in 1820 to a wealthy family that baulked when she turned down a proposal of marriage and announced she wanted to be a nurse.