The Pharmarium is largely inspired by Sweden's first pharmacy, located here on Stortorget. It was a place that contained a vast selection of mysterious ingredients - from magical to medicinal.
The very first Swedish pharmacy was Hovapoteket in the Royal Palace in the 1400s. The first pharmacist, a master Lukas, was adopted by Gustav Vasa. His successor was named Anthonius Busenius, a Dutch pharmacist who first served at Gustav Vasa's court and then at Erik XIV and Johan III. On March 21, 1575, Busenius was allowed to move some of the royal castle's medical supplies and start selling medicines to the public.
The location was here on Stortorget in Old Town, the city's old center. The pharmacy was run under the name Schmidtens pharmacy until 1625 when it moved to the German Brinken and renamed Apoteket Lejonet.
The pharmacy was a mirror of that era's view of illness and healing; a mix of medicine, science, folklore, religion, magic and quackery. You had a monopoly on the trade in medicines and poisons, but you could also sell questionable ingredients such as ivory, mummy powder, peacock strands, unicorn horns, powdered gems or sun and moon ... The fascination of the day for alchemy, the quest to produce gold and find the elixir of eternal life, also played a part. Many Princes, Kings and Queens had their own personal alchemists, people who in fact largely laid the foundations of modern science.