Opefer Que Per Orbem Dicor Crest with Apollo Slaying Python

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Title

Opefer Que Per Orbem Dicor Crest with Apollo Slaying Python

Description

Promotional 17th century Delft reproduction ceramic pill tile produced by the Burroughs, Wellcome & Co. for their Continuing Pharmacy Education Program. The front of the tile depicts a coat of arms with Apollo holding a bow standing over a serpent flanked by unicorns. Under Apollo it reads "Opifer Que Per Orbem Dicor," which means "I am called throughout the world the one who brings help." The following description is glued to the back of the tile on a piece of paper. "In 16th and 17th century England, tiles were used for the purpose of mixing ointments and providing an appropriate surface for rolling and rounding pills. This tile depicts Apollo, god of healing, in the process of slaying Python, demon of illness. Featured are twin unicorns, universally recognized as symbols of medicine. Below the shield appear the Latin motto "I am called throughout the world the one who brings help" and the Coat of Arms of the City of London. Although pill tiles were very popular and coveted by every apothecary in Renaissance England, very few were kept. Only a little over 100 are known to be in existence, many of them in the Collection of the Wellcome Museum in London. Compliments of Burroughs, Wellcome & Co. (B-654)."

Rights

Tiles copyrighted by Burroughs, Wellcome & Co.
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Format

Language

English

Identifier

2021.2.2

Extent

6 in x 6 in

Temporal Coverage

Original Format

Citation

Burroughs, Wellcome & Co., “Opefer Que Per Orbem Dicor Crest with Apollo Slaying Python,” American Institute of the History of Pharmacy Digital Collection, accessed October 5, 2022, https://aihp.omeka.net/items/show/190.