Antica Farmacia di Camaldoli

The story of the Apothecary is not separable from the one of the Hospital of the Monastery. The most ancient document that talks about the foundation of Camaldoli is the Constitutions of the Prior Rudolph I (1074 – 1088), in which you can read that the holy father Romuald, after the foundation of the ‘Hermitage, inspired by the Holy Ghost and on request of the religious bishop of Arezzo Teodaldo, ordered to Pietro, Prior of the Hermitage, to build a church in the lodging house of Fonte Buono – that is, the monastery of Camaldoli – built not far from the hermitage itself.’ (see RC I,3) (cf. RC I,3)

The presence of an infirmary in Fonte Buono is testified by the eremitic rule by Rudolph II (XII century). In his Consistutions it is written that in the monastery of Camaldoli there are ‘servants who were in charge of taking care of patients’ and it is the place where ‘they can receive the right therapies for their healing’. The Apothecary connected to the Hospital was rebuilt in 1331, after the fire of 1276 that destroyed it.

For the following development of the apothecary in Camaldoli, we have to take in consideration what is written in the Rule of the eremitic life by Paolo Giustiniani in 1520. In the rule, you can read about the recommendation to the monastic Community to take care of the jars and the rooms of the infirmary, to pay an external doctor and to supply the medicines to take care of the patients.