Fundación Camino de la Lengua Castellana - c/ Portales, nº 2, 3ª planta - 26001 LOGROÑO (La Rioja) España - Tel. 0034 941 203698 - Fax. 0034 941 220940 E-mail:

To heal the body and the soul

In the Middle Ages, the monks of Silos ran a hospice and leper colony and this led them to become familiar with botany. An early 13th century (1705) pharmacy is still preserved from this activity. The facilities included a specialist botanical garden, a biochemical laboratory, library and a collection of jars.
The library contains almost 400 volumes, some from the 16th century and most from the 17th to 19th centuries. Of particular note is a magnificent work by Dioscórides (1525) featuring some excellent animal and plant drawings; this was an essential reference book for the apothecaries and those responsible for preparing herbal liqueurs at the monastery.
The jar collection comprises almost 400 earthenware jars, specifically made for the pharmacy and bearing the monastery coat of arms. The shelves are also still preserved with their wonderful containers for potions and remedies; in addition to the ovens, retorts, stills and other instruments for heating and distilling substances.

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