The German Pharmacy Museum
located in the Castle of Heidelberg

Logo Deutsches Apotheken-Museum


The History of the Dispensary and of the Pharmacist’s ProfessionThe beginnings of occidental pharmacy as a legally acknowledged subject can be dated back into the 13th century. The constitutions of Emperor Frederick II., announced in 1231 after several regional attempts, are considered as the first systematic legislation concerning pharmacy. Keywords of the law are the rights and the duties of physicians and pharmacists, and above all the independence of both professions is stipulated. This law is the basis of the development of pharmacy even if it was valid only for the Kingdom of Sicily at first.

In the German Museum of Pharmacy introduction area, themes like the prehistoric beginnings, the antique basis of medicine, and especially the exciting evolution of pharmacy from the 13th to the 21st century are presented.

Headwords are: the first pharmacists and their dispensaries in the German-speaking countries, the development of legislation concerning pharmacy, the role of monastic pharmacy, the influence of the observation of nature and of alchemy over medical knowledge, the intensive changes caused by rapidly developing natural sciences, the influence of important scientists, the educational changes from craft to academic profession, and the differentiation of the profession during the 19th and the 20th century.