OFFICINAL, a term applied in medicine to drugs, plants and herbs, which are sold in chemists' and druggists' shops, and to medical preparations of such drugs, etc., as are made in accordance with the prescriptions authorized by the pharmacopoeia. In the latter sense, modern usage tends to supersede " officinal " by " official." The classical Lat. qfficina meant a workshop, manufactory, laboratory, and in medieval monastic Latin was applied to a general store-room (see Du Cange, Gloss., s.v.); it thus became applied to a shop where goods were sold rather than a place where things were made.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)