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Drug Jar

(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Drug jars like this one were usually oviform in shape and were owned most frequently by physicians. The form, very often decorated in cobalt with a cartouche design draped with swags and tassels, was made in England for a period of 100 years, beginning about 1675. Within the cartouche the legend "P Coch[leria]" the "P" indicates the form of the drug, pilulae or pill; "Coch[leria]" refers to the herb, scurvy grass. To protect the contents, the owner laid a cloth across the opening and a string secured it in place. Unlike English physicians, American doctors frequently doubled as pharmacists, concocting the medicines they prescribed.


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