The ancient pharmacy of Santa Maria Novella, one of the oldest in the world, has been pedalling pills, potions and powders for centuries.
The pharmacy is now part of the famous Officina Profumo-Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella, which occupies buildings once belonging to the Dominican convent of the same name. The main sales room was once the medieval Cappella di San Niccolo. Nothing remains of the chapel's original decoration, but its small sacristy boasts a well-preserved set of 14th century frescoes.
The frescoes illustrate scenes from the Passion of Christ and were commissioned by the wealthy Acciaiuoli family. They were painted by Mariotto di Nardo (c.1365-1424) between 1385 and 1405.
A member of the family, Angelo Acciaiuoli, who was the bishop of Florence, appears in the scene of the Crucifixion, together with a rather grim-faced lion, a symbol of the family's coat of arms.