Have you ever gone to hospital or pharmacy? Or have you ever passed by in front of it? Well then, my next question that “Have you ever noticed the logo put up in the top of the building or in the wall?
Hm…. Well you think what the logo that I am talking about, don’t you? All right do you catch what the logo I mean? That’s right. If your answer is the logo of pharmacy.
Well then, you ask yourself why in earth I am asking about the logo of pharmacy. Hm,.. I myself actually do not know why I am asking about the logo. Oh, I remember maybe it is because I saw someone wearing a jacket while I was taking pray in mosque. He wore a jacket at which there was written in the back part of the jacket “Pharmacy 91” along with a picture of snake coming up from a glass. Then, a curiosity was approaching my mind at that time and it whispered a question” oi…humankind find out why a snake is used to symbolize a pharmacy”. “Wakata” I said in a Naruto’s style. Haha.
Then, here it goes, I ended up at Google searching why a snake is used to symbolize a pharmacy. The result are:
History: The snake, The Pharmacy, The logo, “How are they related?”
According to an article I read from Wikipedia, it is stated that the usage of a snake as a symbol of pharmacy is based on Greek Mythology. In Greek Mythology, it is believed that snake or what they called as “the Rod of Asclepius” is a deity or a god that related to the healing and medicine. In Greek, it is symbolized then as a serpent-entwined rod. “The Rod of Asclepius” takes its name from Asclepius. Asclepius has attributes that are snakes and staff which are combined as a symbol.
Temple had been built to admire and worship Asclepius. The temple used to worship Asclepius then was named as asclepion. The most famous temple of Asclepius was at Epidaurus in north-eastern Peloponnese. Another famous healing temple is located in the island of Kos. It is predicted that Hippocrates (a Greece medicine expert) had begun his career in the island of Kos’ temple. Other temples are located in Trikala, Gortys (Arcadia), and Pergamum (Asia).
In honor of Asclepius, a particular type of non-venomous snake was often used in healing rituals. The snakes then are called as Aesculapian snakes. Aesculapian snakes which is native snake of Europe are still exist until now. As I have mentioned before, the snake is non-venomous snake and it is able growing up to 2 meters in full-length. It is often classified as the largest European snakes.
In the Greece healing tradition in the past, when there was a sick person, then the sick person will be threated and healed using Aesculapian snakes. The snakes will be put around the sick person. Then, they will crawled around freely on the floor in dormitories where the sick and injured slept. The ritual of purification would be followed by offerings or sacrifices to the god and the supplicant would spend the night in the holiest part of the sanctuary. Any dreams or visions would be reported to a priest who would prescribe the appropriate therapy by a process of interpretation. Some healing also used a sacred dog to lick the wound of the sick.
Well, you have read the description I write in the passage above. Then, I am sure that you has already gained a little information about why a snake is used as a pharmacy logo. The Geek mythology is related to it. The logos that is now widely used in every hospital in the world comes from a Greece god named Asclepius or in another word it is called as a god of health and medicine.