Apothecaries' Society apprenticeships

The Society of Apothecaries was established by Royal Charter in 1617. Before that date apothecaries had been part of the Grocers' Company.

The archives of the Society are in part deposited at the Guildhall Library, while much of the more modern material remains in the care of the Society. The Minute Books of the Court of Assistants begin in December 1617, and contain details of apprenticeships from April 1618. Apprenticeships from two volumes are listed here. All those from GL Ms 8200/1, the Minutes from 1617 to 1651, are given, and those from GL Ms 8200/2 for the period from 1651 to the end of 1669. The volume of information in the Minutes varies, but for the majority of apprentices full descriptions were given of family and origins. Some bindings which were not made before the Court of Assistants but that came to light later are also recorded here. Contemporary manuscript indexes can be found at the end of both volumes of minutes.

The Court of Assistants were active in examining potential apprentices' physical and scholastic suitability for the trade throughout this period. A number of those presented were initially rejected or deferred. When such an apprentice was later accepted, the dates of their prior examinations are given in brackets at the end of the abstract.

Information on later apprenticeships can be found in the remainder of GL Ms 8200/2 (ends 1680) and GL Ms 8200/3 (ends 1694). From 1694 onwards registers with accounts of Orphans Duty survive (GL Ms 8207), and information on Apothecaries' apprenticeships for the period after 1700 based on these records can be found in P.J. Wallis and R.V. Wallis, Eighteenth century medics: subscription, licenses, apprenticeships (Newcastle upon Tyne, 1988).

The records of 2,088 Apothecaries' apprenticeships have been abstracted.