Apothecary scales; 1800s; 2836


Apothecary scales

About this object

This small set with glass pans can be dismantled and stored in the box base. The apothecary (now called a chemist) used these scales to measure out tiny amounts of drugs and medicines. The basis of the apothecary system is the grain (actually, a barley grain): 20 grains (gr) = 1 scruple, 3 scruples = 1 dram, 8 drams = 1 apothecary's ounce. (Today's kilogram would convert to roughly 15,430 grains). This set belonged to Dr John Danforth Greenwood, a well known early settler to the area, who was very involved in his community, as was his wife Sarah, a renowned artist and diarist.

Date Made


Medium and Materials

Brass and wood

Named Collection

Greenwood Collection

Credit Line

Used by Dr J D Greenwood

Object Type


Object number



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