January 27, 2023

Théodore Turquet de Mayerne1

Among the many medical anniversaries for 20232 is the start of Théodore de Mayerne on 28 September 1573 right into a Huguenot household in Geneva. Having first studied in his birthplace, he later moved to the College of Heidelberg after which to Montpellier to check drugs. He graduated in 1596 and acquired his doctorate in 1597 with a dissertation through which he defended using chemical treatments in drugs, espousing the theories of Paracelsus. In Might 1599, Mayerne joined Henri de Rohan, a Huguenot nobleman, on a Grand Tour of Europe, visiting Germany, Italy, Bohemia, the Netherlands, England, and Scotland. Mayerne and Rohan had been acquired at court docket by Queen Elizabeth I in October 1600 and by King James VI in Edinburgh in November 1600, earlier than returning to France in 1601.

In Paris in 1605, Mayerne’s popularity was enhanced when he was credited with having saved the lifetime of Lord Norreys of Rycote, a kinsman of Robert Cecil, Earl of Salisbury, from a mysterious sickness throughout an epidemic. Nonetheless, growing persecution of the Huguenots in France and a proposal of a place as a private doctor in England led Mayerne to return to England in 1611. Quickly after his arrival he swore an oath of loyalty to King James I and earlier than lengthy was prescribing medicines for the King and Queen. Mayerne included his Montpellier diploma at each Oxford and Cambridge and in 1616 was made a fellow of the Faculty of Physicians, an uncommon honour for a doctor of international background.

The Pharmacopoeia Londinensis

When the Faculty of Physicians was based by Henry VIII in 1518, medicines might be prescribed by apothecaries in addition to by physicians. Apothecaries initially purveyed non-perishable commodities—spices, medicine, comfits, preserves, and the like. They had been members of the Guild of Grocers, classed with pepperers and spicers, however they steadily centered on medicines, and by concerning the center of the 14th century that they had change into practitioners who ready and bought medicine for medicinal functions. Nonetheless, in 1540 Henry VIII promulgated The Pharmacy Wares, Medication, and Stuffs Act, empowering the physicians to examine apothecaries’ wares and destroy them if faulty.3

Though the apothecaries had been eager to be recognised as unbiased practitioners with their very own society, their requests had been refused till 1617, when The Worshipful Society of the Artwork and Mistery of Apothecaries was based underneath James I. The title of the society implied, maybe, that a bit of hocus pocus didn’t go amiss when your treatments had little or no efficacy.

The Faculty of Physicians had first mentioned publishing a pharmacopoeia in 1585,4 intending it to be adopted by all apothecaries, however the activity was thought of too burdensome. Nonetheless, the thought was revived in 1589, when it was “proposed, thought of, and resolved that one definitive public and uniform dispensatory or formulary of medical prescriptions, compulsory for apothecaries’ outlets, must be ready.” Preparation of the Pharmacopoeia started, however progress was gradual; the challenge lapsed in 1594 and was not revived till June 1614.

The inspiration of the Society of Apothecaries in December 1617 had been supported by Mayerne and one other fellow of the school, Henry Atkins, each of whom had been engaged on the school’s pharmacopoeia. Because the pharmacopoeia had at all times been supposed for use by all apothecaries, the physicians elevated their efforts and the Pharmacopoeia Londinensis was printed on 7 Might 1618. The 34 physicians whose names had been included had been headed by Henry Atkins “Doc[tor] Med[icinae]: Regis Medicus ordinarius, & Collegij Medicorum Londinensum Praesidens” and Théodore de Mayerne “Medicinae Physician, Regiarum Majestarum Medicus primarius.”

Nonetheless, the physicians then claimed that the primary version had been botched on the printers’ store. The faculty withdrew it and issued a tremendously expanded revised model, which they designated the primary version, on 7 December 1618, claiming in an epilogue that the printer of the sooner model had “snatched away from our fingers this little work not but completed off, … defiled with so many faults and errors, incomplete and mutilated due to misplaced and reduce off members.” Which was supposedly why the Pharmacopoeia Londinensis had two first editions. Whether or not this was the true cause is unclear, and different explanations are doable.

Clare Fowler, in a wonderful account of the historical past of the Pharmacopoeia Londinensis,5 has advised that Mayerne prematurely submitted his personal model to the printer, to the dissatisfaction of the opposite fellows, who changed it with the later model. Comparability of the title pages of the 2 variations suggests one other doable rationalization. The primary distinction between the 2 is the inclusion of royal symbols, such because the lion and the unicorn, within the Might 1618 model, however the absence of each the royal coat of arms and that of the school. The physicians could not have appreciated the title web page within the first model. Moreover, the King himself could have been displeased, and never solely with the title web page—his proclamation, that “all Apothecaries of this Realme [should] observe this Pharmacopoeia … upon paine of our excessive displeasure,” was inadvertently omitted from the early impressions. One more reason for blaming the printer, Edward Griffin.

The Pharmacopoeia Londinensis laid the foundations for different nationwide pharmacopoeias, the Edinburgh Pharmacopoeia (1699) and the Dublin Pharmacopoeia (1807). The final version of the London Pharmacopoeia, the eleventh, appeared in 1851. By then the necessity for harmonisation had change into clear, notably for the reason that Poor Regulation Modification Act of 1834, with the establishment of infirmaries and dispensaries, had resulted in growing calls for for medicines. The British Pharmacopoeia (Pharmacopoeia Britannica), beneficial and introduced within the Medical Acts of 1858 and 1862, respectively, appeared in 1864 and continues to be in use at present.

Mayerne was knighted by James I in 1624.