The Evolution of the word “Pharmacy”

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img_customeIt is from this evolution of a pharmacist being the maker and compounder of medications that the word pharmacy is defined. The word pharmacy is defined as “the art of preparing and dispensing drugs or a place where drugs are sold; a drugstore.” The word pharmacy originates from the Greek word pharmakon or remedy. There has been some arguments that the word pharmacy came from the Egyptian term ph-ar-maki or the bestower of security, which the god Thoth, patron of physicians, conferred as approbation on a ferryman who had managed a safe crossing. However, the word pharmacy and its many cognates derived, like many of the other scientific terms, most likely originates from the Greeks.

It is impossible to put a exact date when the word pharmacy originated since people were practicing medicine before the word even existed. Priests and Doctors in the medieval times were combining different ingredients or compounding, but was it called compounding, we are not sure. The Artisans of Mesopotamia, Egypt, and China were the first known people to actually carry out chemical processes. Most of these people worked in the temples and palaces, making luxury goods for priests and nobles. Priests also speculated on all the changes that were going on in the world about them. Their theories often involved magic. However, some of these theories are now considered chemical.

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