Şehremini Central Pharmacy's Book of Prescriptions
The "Ottoman Pharmacy Museum" which has been reconstructed by using all the respective shelves and material of Şehremini Merkez Eczanesi (Şehremini Central Pharmacy, ŞCP) has been installed at the entrance of Pharmacognosy Department of Hacettepe University Faculty of Pharmacy, Ankara. The pharmacy is 115 years old by now.
The first owner of ŞCP was Pharm. Konstantin Sava Mandika. ŞCP has been acquired by Pharm. Ahmet Hamdi [Emgen] in 20 Octobre1922. When Pharm. Hamdi passed away in the year 1973, his daughter Pharm. İhsan Gezgin took over the administration of the pharmacy. She run the ŞCP until 1980 when she had to close it due to health reasons. At that date the pharmacy was about 85 years old. The 27 years of life span of the pharmacy was under Pharm. Konsantin Sava Mandika, its 51 years under Pharm. A. Hamdi Emgen, and a further 7 years under his daughter Pharm. İhsan Gezgin. Together with all it's shelves, equipment and material, the pharmacy was donated to Prof. Dr. Ekrem Sezik, and moved from Istanbul to Ankara to be reconstructed at the entrance of Pharmacognosy Department of Hacettepe University, Faculty of Pharmacy. It has been inaugurated as a museum on 23 December 1983. ŞCP has already completed 27 years of it's historical existence as a museum.
There are several prescription books in the ŞCP. The oldest of them covers the years 1922-24. This book includes the latest records kept by Pharm. K. Sava Mandika and the preliminary records by Pharm. Ahmet Hamdi. This book is being kept in the private collection of Prof. E. Sezik. In the present essay, this 88 years old prescription book has been restudied. The book of prescriptions starts with a certification page. The first registration was made on 26 June 1922. The book consists of 790 pages and ends on 18 August 1924. At the beginning the dates were given in French. From 1923 on, a stamp with Arabic numerals and characters was used to mark the dates in Turkish on the pages.
In the book of prescriptions there are 8827 prescriptions which are mostly generic. The prescriptions were written in French, as it was the custom in those days. The mostly prescribed forms were: solid forms like packs, cachets and liquid forms like potions, mixtures. The ampoules that have been registered were the ones manufactured in the pharmacy but the tablets were not fabricated. This prescription book should be evaluated as an important source for the history of Ottoman pharmacy, considering that it covers particularly the years 1922-23. The books of prescriptions that have been previously published start with the year 1924. In this respect ŞCP's book of prescriptions appears to be the only extant book dated to the Ottoman period.
Key words: Ottoman pharmacy, pharmacy museum, prescription book, Şehremini Central Pharmacy, Turkish pharmacy.