11 – Monastic Pharmacy

During the Middle Ages remnants of the Western knowledge of Pharmacy and Medicine were preserved in the monasteries (fifth to twelfth centuries). These scientists are known to have been taught in the cloisters as early as the seventh century. Manuscripts from many islands were translated or copied for monastery libraries. The monks gathered herbs and simples in the field, or raised them in their own herb gardens. These they prepared according to the art of the apothecary for the benefit of the sick and injured. Gardens such as these still may be found in monasteries in many countries.

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