Apothecaries’ Hall of Ireland

Repository: Royal College of Physicians of Ireland

Identity Statement

TitleApothecaries' Hall of Ireland
Archive ReferenceIE RCPI/AH
Web Link to this Entryhttps://iar.ie/archive/apothecaries-hall-ireland
Creation Dates1745-2009
Extent Medium51 volumes 3 boxes


Creator(s): Apothecaries' Hall of Ireland Guild of St. Luke

  • Administrative History ↴

    The Guild of St. Luke was established by Royal Charter in 1754, after several years of petitioning. The guild was mainly under the control of the King and Queen's College of Physicians in Ireland, although they could create by-laws and exercise some control over the regulation of the profession. The Apothecaries Act of 1791 established the Apothecaries' Hall of Ireland, with a governor, deputy governor and thirteen directors and subscribers. Membership was open to all apothecaries in Dublin on payment of £100, on which annual interest was paid, making the Hall a licenses company. Under the Apothecaries' Act no apothecary could take an apprentice who had not been examined by the Hall, and apprentices were required to serve for seven years. Under the Act no one could open an apothecary's shop without a certificate from the Hall, and there were restrictions on the sale of poisons. Appeals against the Hall decision could be made to the King and Queen's College of Physicians in Ireland. The Hall also had the right to impose fine on those who broke the terms of the Act. Under the Medical Act (1858) the qualification of Licentiate of Apothecaries' Hall was included as one of the recognised qualifications needed to practice medicine in the British Isle, as well as open an Medical Hall or Apothecary Shop. Apothecaries' Hall was an examining and licensing body, not a teaching one. Applicants had to present evidence of adequate attendance at lecture and clinical instruction at recognised centres, before sitting the examinations. In 1971 Apothecaries' Hall right to issue licenses to practice medicine was removed by the General Medical Council and the Medical Registration Council of Ireland. As the Hall was established by Act of Parliament, an Act of Parliament would also be needed to close it. The Hall continues to exist although its primary function has been removed.
  • Archival History ↴

    The collection was held in Apothecaries' Hall's administrative building on Merrion Square until 2011 when it was transferred to the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland.
  • Immediate Source Acquisition ↴


Content & Structure

  • Scope & Content: Apothecaries' Hall of Ireland Guild of St. Luke ↴

    The corporate archive of Apothecaries’ Hall of Ireland, mainly minute books and papers relating to the examinations held by the Hall for apothecaries and medical practitioners. Collection also includes papers relating to the Apothecaries Benevolent Fund for Ireland, a small collection of financial and other administrative papers.

    Also the records of the Guild of St. Luke which was a guild of apothecaries established in Dublin in 1754, and the fore runner of the Apothecaries’ Hall.

  • Appraisal Destruction ↴

    Permanent Retention
  • Arrangement ↴

    Records have been divided into six sections by record type; The Guild of St. Luke, Administrative Papers, Financial Papers, Apothecaries Benevolent Fund for Ireland, Examinations, and, Newspaper Cuttings and Miscellany.

Conditions of Access & Use

Access Conditions Access subject to the conditions laid out in the Heritage Centre Access Guidelines
Conditions Governing ReproductionCopying of archive material is subject to the conditions laid out in the Heritage Centre Copying Guidelines
Creation Dates1745-2009
Extent Medium51 volumes 3 boxes
Finding Aids The collection list is available in the reading room or online Archive Web Link →

Allied Materials

There are no Allied Materials

Descriptive Control Area

Archivist NoteHarriet Wheelock
Rules/ConventionsISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description. 2nd ed. Ottawa: International Council on Archives, 2000. IGAD: Irish Guidelines for Archival Description. Dublin: Society of Archivists, Ireland, 2009. National Council on Archives: Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names. Chippenham: National Council on Archives, 1997.
Date of Descriptions40848