The Royal Pharmaceutical Society Museum is open again!

Come and see us, every Monday to Friday, from 9am - 5pm.


Royal Pharmaceutical Society Museum

We're making more and more of our collections and exhibitions available online. 

So, now everyone can pay a socially-distanced, online visit to our Pharmacy Museum!



About the Museum

Pharmacy has a long - and often strange - history, and the Royal Pharmaceutical Society Museum is full of fascinating exhibits from that history!

A long and peculiar history...

Bear grease that patients would rub on their head to promote hair growth

A cure for baldness?

Back in the 18th century, people would rub this bear grease on their head to stop hair loss.

These days, most people would probably prefer to go bald than rub the grease from a dead bear on their head.

Medicine made from a human skull and used to treat epilepsy

Keep your head!

Back in the 17th century, if you suffered from epilepsy, then you might have been prescribed this unlikely remedy: pieces of real human skull.

Did it work? Almost certainly not (and if you were really unlucky it might still taste of bear grease!)

What else?

A real mummified human hand!

Somewhere in our Museum lurks a mummified human hand!

Once believed to help thin the blood, mummified human hands are no longer used in any medical capacity.

However, these ancient digits are a perfect example of some of the strange remedies that our ancestors once used.

How would you feel if a pharmacist gave you one of these?

How medicines have changed...

If you had a sore throat a hundred years ago, we wouldn't advise sucking one of Allenburys Throat Pastilles - they contain the illegal drugs cocaine and morphine.

It seems rather a drastic remedy for a sore throat!

And there are lots more strange and wonderful sights to discover from the history of pharmacy.

Come and Explore

Visit the museum and discover how pharmacy has progressed from bears grease to the medicines we recognise today!


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