Gold. — “I shall introduce from the 'Materia Medica' I have been for some time engaged upon, and give two remedies as examples of my method, and in illustration of the manner in which the doctrines I have been attempting to explain may be applied in practice. One of these drugs shall be an old one revived, the other a new one, which will, in this manner, make its entrance into the Materia Medica, and be presented for the first time before the medical profession, though, doubtless, should it be adopted by your party, some other name than mine will be attached to it as its discoverer.
“The opportunity, for which I am thus indebted to you, also enables me to convey to my own party, through this small specimen, some notion of the plan upon which I am working, and they can express to me, in any way that they think proper, their opinion as to the utility of such an undertaking, and whether they are disposed to encourage me to persevere with it or not.”
”Gold — as a Poison. — Professor Christison, quoting from Orfila, writes thus of gold: 'Its poisonous properties are powerful, and closely allied to those of the chlorides of tin and nitrate of silver. In the state of chloride it occasions death in three or four minutes when injected into the veins even in very minute doses; and the lungs are found after death so turgid as to sink in water. But if it be swallowed corrosion takes place, the salt is so rapidly decomposed that none is taken up by the absorbents, and death ensues simply from the local injury.' 'Even doses so small as the tenth of a grain have been known to produce an unpleasant degree of irritation in the stomach.' — (Majendie.) 'In the state of fulminating gold this metal has given rise to alarming poisoning in former times, when it was used medicinally.' 'It excites griping, diarrhea, vomiting, convulsions, fainting, salivation; and sometimes has proved fatal.' (Plenck.) 'Hoffman likewise repeatedly saw it prove fatal and the most remarkable symptoms were vomiting, great anxiety and fainting. In one of his cases the dose (which caused death) was only six grains.'“
“Metallic gold was pulverized or triturated by the Arabians. Several modern physicians have experimented with it, thus reduced to minute subdivision, upon themselves, taking, in divided doses, one or two grains. The result of these experiments shows that gold acts upon:
“It is thus seen that gold has a penetrating or deep-seated action; commencing in the brain, and affecting very specially the mind, passing through the chest and abdomen, and, finally, concentrating its energies on the bones in general, but particularly on those of the face.”
”Gold — as a Remedy. — Gold was much used as a medicine some centuries ago. It was thought to promote the production of animal heat, to strengthen the heart, to restore the blood, to expel noxious humours, and particularly to exhilarate depressed spirits. For some time gold has been abandoned as a medicinal drug, it is now beginning to employed again.
“1. A case of extreme melancholy and despondency, arising from a Chancery suit; the patient was in a most distressing state; after various other remedies had failed, I prescribed the first trituration (one hundredth of a grain); he wrote after this, 'I felt better at once.'
“3. A child in a hopeless state of disease, one of the features of which was severe ophthalmia, with ulcers on the cornea in both eyes, which had resisted the prolonged and varied use of many excellent remedies; the poor child was emaciated and exhausted with suffering and fretfulness; and the mother was almost as bad from nursing, anxiety, and want of rest. The quantity taken was a minute fraction of a grain, in divided doses. The little patient was restored, by God's blessing, to perfect health.
“4. A case of exostosis of the tibia, just below the knee, a boy; the first trituration was given with benefit; I believe a cure was effected, but. as is often the case when that happens, the patient's friends did not think it worth while to communicate this intelligence directly to me.
“Gold is an antidote to Mercury, relieving the neuralgic pains and other mischievous effects of that metal, especially when the bones have been injured by it; and, vice versa, Mercury is an antidote to Gold.
“The organs selected by Gold upon which to produce its effects are distinct and its action profound; and, whether it be given in health or in disease, as a poison or as a remedy, the organs upon which it acts are, in both cases, the same. — Sharp's Letter to Brodie, p. 89.
Titanium. — “This substance has never, to my knowledge, been used in medicine before. I have proved it upon myself some years ago, and have prescribed it in considerable number or cases, and generally with the greatest satisfaction. I have been anxious to introduce it to my professional brethren, but have hitherto kept it back, partly that I might attain a more settled confidence in it myself, and because I intended it to appear in its place in my own 'Materia Medica.' But as that undertaking is not yet completed, for, as may be supposed, it is one of great extent and labor; as life is uncertain; and this opportunity seems to be a fitting one, I have much pleasure in presenting it in this place, under your auspices, Sir Benjamin, for to yon it is indebted for this happy opportunity of revealing its admirable utility. I give it, not only as a specific itself, but as an illustration and proof of the value of experiments upon the healthy, as a method of discovering specifics in any number, and for any complaint; the limits to these discoveries being the very few physicians who are willing to try to make them, and the limited zeal, industry, and talent of mankind.
”Titanium — as a Poison. — Titanium was discovered by Gregor in 1791, but we are indebted to Wollaston's experiments, in 1822, for a better acquaintance with it. This rare metal is obtained chiefly from the bottom of the large smelting furnaces in iron work. Several years ago, when one of these furnaces at the Low Moor Iron Works, in Yorkshire, which had been burning without intermission for many years, was blown out for the purpose of undergoing repairs, through the kindness of Mr. Wickham, I obtained a considerable lump of Titanium. The metal was in beautiful cubic crystals, of a deep red copper color, and very brilliant metallic lustre. I had some of these crystals triturated by the late Mr. Turner, of Manchester, and experimented with this trituration upon myself. The proportion was one grain to ninety nine of sugar of milk. I am not aware of any other proving.
“From these experiments I am assured that Titanium has a powerful action upon the human body. After taking the preparation I have described, in doses of two grains, once a day for a week, I became greatly disordered, and felt and looked wretchedly ill. On a careful consideration of my indisposition I am justified in summing up the action of the drug as being upon:
”Titanium — as a Remedy. — I have found Titanium a most valuable remedy for certain cases, for which no good remedy was known before. They are cases of degeneration of the blood. A time will come when, with a more refined chemistry, our knowledge of the constitution of the circulating fluid which is the life of man's body, and the changes it undergoes in disease, will be better understood than they are at present. We can now speak of the morbid conditions of the blood only in a crude and general manner. We know that the blood is altered from its healthy state in typhus, in chlorosis, in jaundice, in cholera, in inflammatory fever, and in some other diseases, and we can describe in an imperfect manner, some of these changes, but there remains an inexhaustible field of research in this department of physiology and pathology. — The morbid condition of the blood, which may be called the Titanium condition, will be understood with some degree of accuracy by a careful study of the following case, which was the first in which it was given as a remedy.
“1. Blood disease. — Mr. C. F., a middle-aged, and formerly stout and healthy man, seven years ago had an attack of typhus fever, recovered imperfectly, and has not been thoroughly well since; during the last five years has gradually but steadily become worse. He vomits a great deal, but not food; the matter rejected is a sour, watery phlegm; he has diarrhea, the stools consisting of yellow, frothy, slimy matter; the secretion of the kidneys is high colored and thick, (in some other cases it has been albuminous); he spits blood, and sometimes has hemorrhage from the bowels; he has pain in the region of the liver and kidneys, and also in the lower bowels, with much cramp; the eyes slightly jaundiced; there has been great loss of strength and flesh, and two stones (twenty-eight pounds) in weight. The tongue is not much furred, and the pulse is 80. This gentleman tells me he has had a great deal of medical advice, but as yet has derived no benefit either from medicines or from careful diet, or from change of air, having during the fire years paid two or three long visits at the sea-side and also on the Welsh mountains. This account I received on the 28th of April, 1858. I prescribed half a grain of the first trituration (one grain in a hundred), three times a day for a week, being moved to this by the vivid recollection his narrative produced in my mind of the condition I was myself falling into while proving Titanium. At the end of the week he wrote to me that ho was 'altogether a different man;' and, without any repetition of the remedy, and without the use of any other means, in a very short time he regained perfect health. He continued well a year; in the spring of 1859 he made himself ill by hunting too much, and some of the former symptoms showed themselves again, but they were immediately removed by the same remedy; he has continued generally well since.” — Sharp's Letter to Brodie, p. 93.
When a man goes into a forest for the purpose of collecting specimens of vegetation, the method he adopts will depend on the object he has in view. If his purpose be to make such a collection that, when he gets home again, he shall be able to distinguish each specimen from every other one, he will be careful to preserve every portion that is characteristic or that can serve in any way to identify the plant from which it came. Leaves, buds, flowers, fruit and roots will all be of the very greatest importance — relatively indeed, of much greater importance that the wood and bark themselves, although of the latter something must be preserved. This way of gathering specimens is very cumbersome, it must be admitted. His arms soon become full and he requires a great space to accomodate even a small number of specimens. Then, too, the analysis is tedious and takes much time. Let him not forget, however, that there is no other way of accomplishing his object of making a collection in which each specimen shall appear with all its properties and peculiarities.
If, on the other hand, his object be to make faggots for firewood, his task is easy. He requires no equipment save a sharp hatchet and some twine. He goes lightly along, trimming off leaves and buds and flowers and roots — for these are only trivial incidents of growth, and are of no account whatever, in view of his object — getting faggots for fire-wood. His only aim is to deprive every tolerably straight stick of suitable site, of all its lateral and terminal ”redundancies” and to make it a convenient shape for tying in a bundle with others.
Each of these men is the type of a class of laborers in the forest of the Homoeopathic Materia Medica. The one class is striving, so to elaborate the provings as to bring out into strong relief the individual characteristics of each drug, in order that the practitioner may have the means of making every prescription the exact application of an individual specific. To this object, toil, space, time are held to be subordinate considerations. The other class, not comprehending or else despising this laborious attention to minutiae, is “cutting faggots.”
Dr. Sharp seems to have entered the ranks of the latter class. Availing himself of his letter to Sir B. Brodie to give the latter a specimen of what he is pleased to call the Homoeopathic Materia Medica, he tells us, the pages given are part of a work he is preparing on the subject, and invites the suggestions and criticism of his colleagues.
Dr. Sharp says elsewhere in his letter, “I may be supposed to be a disciple of Hahnemann and be held responsible for his follies. I altogether disclaim such responsibility and relationship.” We hold this declaimer to be altogether unnecessary. No one who reads this extract from the forth-coming Materia Medica could imagine Dr. Sharp to know anything about Homoeopathy. He need have no fear that either the “follies” or the glories “of Hahnemann” will fall within his orbit!
In the foregoing account of Gold as a remedy, the proving of this substance is so seduously pruned by Dr. Sharp of all those “dismembered and detached fragments — insignificant and often, perhaps, imaginary sensations and other trivial matters which mingle with and hide the meaning of the real and important symptoms” — that it is presented to us a short, compact, stemless stick all ready to be tied up in a faggot along with its sister Mercury — for, thus denuded of all that was characteristic, the proving given by Dr. Sharp could not be distinguished from a proving of Mercury.
“Gold as a Remedy” will not add to Dr. Sharp's renown as a prescriber of specifics — for pray what warrant does he find in “Gold as a Poison” forgiving Gold as a remedy in “Ophthalmia with ulcers on the cornea?”
The pages upon Titanium, while interesting as all cases of accidental cure by a drug whose properties are unknown, must be, are yet a sorry specimen of a Homoeopathic Materia Medica. The record of its proving is given in eight lines — only one single definite symptom is given — a form of hemiopia — the chief action is stated to be upon ”The Blood; a perceptible derangement of the whole system which could not without danger have been carried further.” A pity that even thus much of danger should have been incurred to so little purpose! A Mr. F. C. was cured by Titanium. Dr. Sharp anticipates our inquiry “What were the grounds of this prescription which you give as a specimen of the homoeopathic use ot Titanium?” by giving his reason thus “being moved to this by the vivid recollection his narrative produced in my mind of the condition I was myself falling into while proving Titanium!” In the name of all that is not babyish, senile, or asinine, why does he not describe to us “that condition into which he was falling” — by giving us the symptoms which the drug produced!
It acted upon the blood! Does this convey a definite idea. How can we know that our ideas of “action upon the blood” agree with his? And what kind of action? There is one action of Titanium perhaps, another of Salt, another of Iodine and so on through the Materia Medica, just as there is one action on the blood, of scarlatina poison, another of variola and another of gout and so through nosology. What kind of action is peculiar to each exciting cause, whether disease or drug? This is the vital question! Describe it, not in hypotheses, but in definite, graphic terms! This is the task!
ANNIVERSARY OF HAHNEMANN'S BIRTHDAY. — The homoeopathic physicians of New York and Brooklyn celebrated the one hundred and seventh anniversary of the birthday of Samuel Hahnemann by a social reunion and dinner at the Fifth Avenue Hotel, New York.
The occasion was made one of interest as Dr. John F. Gray had consented to deliver an address on his personal recollections of the introduction and early history of Homoeopathy in this country, he being the first to embrace the new system.
We cannot give the address and proceedings in full, nor would we anticipate their publication in pamphlet form. On the removal of the cloth, Dr. HALLOCK, President of the New York County Homoeopathic Medical Society, made a few remarks as follows:
“The object of our meeting on this anniversary of the birth of Hahnemann is not only to celebrate his honored memory, but also to revive the cherished remembrance of the men who first introduced Homoeopathy into this country. It seems then the proper duty of the homoeopathic physicians of New York to cherish the memory and secure the history of those who nearly forty years ago embraced and practiced the then unknown doctrine. When we remember the difficulties encountered by the earlier advocates of the homoeopathic system, that the literature of that early period was in a foreign language and the study of the German and French was almost indispensable to the knowledge necessary to practice; they had to sacrifice their professional reputation, incur loss of social respect and intercourse, endanger all acquired patronage; and the exposure to abuse and ridicule that every where awaited them, we may well admire the courage and perseverance of the pioneers of our school, and feel that they deserve from us their favored followers the tribute of grateful and lasting remembrance. I may well congratulate you, gentlemen, that this duty to the founders of our school in America has been performed by our honorable friend who is to address you, than whom no one has enjoyed greater opportunities of intimate intercourse with the men of whom he speaks. He himself was among the first and foremost to embrace the despised doctrine and long may his attainments and labors be continued among us.”
made in the science of medicine from the times of Haller and Blumenbach to the present, when “the fruits of experiment have replaced the scholastic speculations.” of that day. He spoke of the sharp controversies and the various sects which were constantly springing up till Hahnemann “examined laboriously all the records of the past, gathered together the scattered fragments of toxicology, and for the first time in the entire history of medicine the cornerstone of the real temple of Therapeia was laid.”
When Hahnemann announced his discovery there were a few far seeing physicians who could understand and appreciate it, and in 1808 they were ready for his first work. This was small but prepared the way for his Materia Medica which appeared in 1821.
“Our beloved predecessor, Dr. H. B. Gram, was among the number of those who caught the rays of hidden truth. He was then in the full tide of practice in the city of Copenhagen. He was born in this country, his father was of Danish origin, his mother was an American. He lost his father when very young. When a boy he went to Europe, gained his education, made his professional standing there and accumulated a competent fortune by his practice. Before he returned, at the age of forty years, he had settled the theory of Hahnemann in his own personal practice. In 1825 he resolved to return to America for the purpose of introducing the new system to the profession under institutions and conditions which he deemed more favorable to its general adoption.”
Shortly after arriving he published his first and only work The Characteristic of Homoeopathia, a translation of Hahnemann's 'Geist der Homoeopathischen Heillehre,' a pamphlet of twenty-four pages, octavo. Dr. Gram's long absence from this country and disuse of his native language made his translation into English literal Without getting precisely the spirit of the author as was afterwards done by Drs. Scott and Dudgeon in England.
In speaking of it, Dr. Gray remarked “It is greatly to be regretted that Gram was not familiar with the language. This essay was an inventory, an epitome of Homoeopathy by the founder himself in his strongest stage of activity and could not fail to produce a wide spread impression at that time when the profession had not struck the key note of truth.”
The publication did not meet with the favor expected. Dr. Gray continued: “Gram desponded. He thought in this free land people were philosophic and when a great truth was clearly set forth it would be hospitably entertained under the republican institutions of the United States. However imperfectly he effected his version with reference to the American mode of expression it was grammatically executed, and it cost him immense labor. The selection of this work was, in my opinion, a very wise one. It is the ablest of Hahnemann's polemical treatises, and is a test equally of Gram's own genius. * *
“Gram was not only the pioneer of Homoeopathy in this country but the first in any trans, Germanic country. He came not in search of wealth or happiness, for he was in a prosperous position, a man of rare endowments. He came away from a state, a people, a country that deeply loved him, as an apostle of what he deemed a reform most important to humanity. * *
“Next in chronological order to Gram, I entered the list in the study of Homoeopathy. Mr. F. L. Wilsey, afterwards Dr. Wilsey, introduced me to Dr. Gram in 1827. I had treated Mr. Wilsey for dyspepsia for a long time with such poor success that at his request I consented with much reluctance to place him under Dr. Gram's care to test the value of the improved process. — Under this treatment the patient received early and marked benefit. At that time I ascribed the change to his improved diet, but I could not answer Gram's arguments; very soon I was to put the method of Hahnemann to the test. After I had been fairly beaten in argument there was nothing left but experiment.”
He selected three cases, carefully noted the symptoms, regulated the diet and prescribed single remedies for each case with such success that there was no room for doubt. It was during the first year of his acquaintance with Gram that he became a convert to Homoeopathy.
In 1829 Dr. A. D. Wilson joined them. At that time Dr. A. G. Hull, a student and brother-in-law of Dr. Gray, met with them in their daily reunions, and frequently in the summer season with Gram they made excursions into the country in pursuance of botanical studies. Dr. Hull took his degree in the arts at Union College in 1828, and took a post graduate course in Anatomy and Chemistry under the late Dr. Joslin. In 1832, Dr. Hull formally entered the profession.
Dr. William Channing was the next to join the homoeopathic ranks. Dr. Gray said, “he was a man of large culture in letters and thoroughly educated in medicine. He was in the prime of life at the time of his conversion to Homoeopathy, in 1832. * * He was frequently in our little circle and often, of course, the new practice happened to be discussed, and on the first outbreak of the cholera, in 1832, Dr. Channing visited the hospitals and sided in prescribing for the victims of the epidemic as an allopathic physician, and seeing the success of the homoeopathic treatment he made a public trial of Camphor with such good results that he published them, and soon after made known his entire change of practice. His was an eminently logical mind. He attended with great earnestness to all topics of a philosophical character until he arrived at definite conclusions, and when he reached those he was firm and decided in maintaining them. He was not of the skeptical class on any topic. In politics he was a republican of the Hamiltonian school, in religion a Unitarian, a cousin of the great William E. Channing, in medicine a thorough Hahnemannian.
“Our method was to, administer doses equivalent to the first and second centesimal dilutions. Sometimes we used the third but very rarely went above it, with few exceptions, which I personally ever since regretted.
“During this period all the homoeopathic literature was in the German and French language, and this was one reason why the system did not spread faster. Physicians in middle life and large practice could not begin the study of a foreign language to learn about a system so diametrically opposed to the one they practised. As soon as any translations appeared, Drs. Gray and Hull published their American Journal of Homoeopathia, and the New York Homoeopathic Society was organized, of which the Hon. Wm. C. Bryant was President.
The Doctor continued, “when the hour of manly effort arrived at last, it found us, after so many years of patient waiting harnessed for the prosecution of our ablest efforts. During this early stage of the system and the last of that early stage was Dr. Joseph T. Curtis, the pride of the classical school, the man of genius and the child of misfortune in many ways.”
About the commencement of the second epoch of Homoeopathy in New York, 1833, 1834 and 1835, Dr. Hering arrived in Philadelphia and obtained a charter for a college which was opened at Allentown. This however was not successful, and Dr. Hering returned to Philadelphia and resumed general practice. Dr. Gray continued, “Dr. Hering has contributed, as you all know, largly to our Materia Medica, besides writing a book on 'Domestic Medicine,' the only one in our school really original. He was a favorite with Hahnemann and followed the old master's example in all his practice. Like Channing he never omitted the master's acerbity towards those who did not coincide with him, yet he was liberal in other respects, genial towards his friends, an ornament to his profession, philanthropic to his fellow men.”
Dr. Gray spoke of Drs. G. W. Cook, J. Taylor, A Freeman, B. F. Joslin, of New York, and Drs. Cox, of Williamsburgh, and Rosman, of Brooklyn, among the pioneers not living; and mentioned as early associates in the cause our honoured colleagues Drs. A. S. Ball, B. F. Bowers, H. G. Dunnell, S. R. Kirby, J. A. McVickar, P. P. Wells, and C. Wright.
“We remember Hahnemann as the just, the good, the great. In these characteristics he ever stands before us, and in memory of them we cherish the inheritance he has left us in his bright example of excellence of heart, soundness of mind and purity of life. In all the course of his lengthened pilgrimage, in all his trials, in all his temptations, in all his sorrows, in all the injustice and persecution he was made to suffer, no man was found sufficiently hardened to breath a suspicion against his integrity as a man, as a scholar and a physician. Even his opponents, and how many there were, never ventured to insinuate that he gave to any man less than was his just due, or exacted from any more than was rightfully due. He was not only just, he was much more, he was good. From this trait of his character originated that discovery which has given him a place with those who have conferred the largest benefits on mankind, who had the sagacity to perceive, and the honesty to acknowledge the injuries inflicted on our sick by the method of treatment which had been taught by the schools and the practice of that day; and he did not hesitate to condemn and abandon those methods, though by so doing he sacrificed the means of support for himself and those dependent upon him. He stood before the world a self-made beggar for conscience sake. This was a singular spectacle of devotion to truth and conscience, of benevolence to the suffering of his race such as I do not believe can be found in the history of any other man of his profession from the remotest antiquity to this day. Other physicians have been honest men, and many others have been good men, but no other has shown such honesty and such goodness as this man who thus sacrificed for truth, conscience and benevolence that which cost him so much. It was when thus driven from the labors of his chosen profession to other employments that he might both gain the means of supplying the wants of his young and dependent family, and while thus engaged that he determined to solve for. himself the problem of the action of Cinchona on the human organism of which he found so many contradictory statements, in the authorities and writings of his predecessors. He determined to faithfully obtain a knowledge of the facts, unwilling to put faith in the dicta of other men. And it was while solving this problem for himself that that light broke into his mind which revealed the great law of specifics which we believe and practice; and under the guidance of this law that he was enabled to go on with the full development of that system of practical medicine which has so greatly interested mankind, and which we believe with a confidence equal to our confidence in the prevailing power of truth. And I believe it to be a truth and right which is destined to fill and bless the earth.
“In the other elements of the character of Hahnemann which we commemorate to night in addition to that greatness which ever inures in human nature — goodness of the person, this man was truly great in the dignity and simplicity of his character. The testimony of one who knew him more intimately than perhaps any other man in our country, or any other country, was, that he was wholly free from guile and just like a child. The testimony of those who knew him is, that he was great in his devotion to scientific truth, great in his labors for its advancement, and great in his success. To the end he was great in the truly heroic courage with which he devoted his body to pain and his life to toil that he might gain that exact knowledge of the action of drugs on the living organism which enabled him to arrive at exact conclusions, which the world had not reached before his day. And he has left on the record a legacy to you and to me by which we have been blessed and by which we endeavor to bless in turn others. He was great in his ability to observe facts as they transpired before him, and in the discrimination with which he separated the true from the false; and especially great in that observation which followed the workings of disease and drugs in the living organs, discerning the true and physiological conditions and the relation of drugs thereto, and, finally, arriving at the verity of that law which has given the name to that system of practical medicine which he developed and which in turn carried a knowledge of itself to the ends of the earth.
“If he was great in his sufferings and untiring in his labors, to those once his friends, who had the power to inflict greater and deeper injuries and insult than any, he showed his greatness more than all. But these attacks, often beyond endurance, at last embittered his spirit. On them rests the responsibility.
“I thank the Committee of Arrangements that it is a political and not a professional toast to which I am called to reply. It shows that they know how to prescribe for my case. Those words with which the toast commences, Our Country' suggest in these times a somewhat different set of ideas from those which they called to mind a very few years since. Three years ago when our country was named it brought up the idea of a mighty republic composed of peaceful States, living harmoniously together in peace and prosperity; a republic increasing from day to day in population, in power, in strength; making rapid progress in all the arts which would add comfort or embellishment to life, winning new trophies in science, and raising itself to such a height that we all exalted that the powerful monarchs of the Old World now regarded us with a wholesome dread. * * *
“There is yet another consolation and that is, there never was a sword drawn, there never was resolve made in a more righteous cause than ours. It is not always in the relations of the world that a great principle is involved. It is not always when armies meet in the battle field that they meet for a cause for which blood is worthy to be shed. * * *
We are maintaining the Government of our country whose example of freedom has been the terror and the detestation of many of the Statesmen of the old world, who have regarded us from the beginning with the eye of dread and envy, and who now rejoice in our misfortune.
“It is our mission — a glorious mission, if we fulfil it faithfully — to preserve this fabric of popular liberty, to preserve it as a model for the founders of future commonwealths, and to deliver it to the next generation as entire as we received it from our fathers. These troubles, my friends, which have come upon us, are not the fruit of our form of Government. They do not spring from that principle of human equality on which this Government of ours is founded. They spring from a principle entirely different and absolutely opposite. Although our Government is founded on the basis of human equality, yet in a large part of our country there is a system in great vigor, an institution founded on a different principle. Oar Government rests on consent. The institution to which I refer rests upon obligation, upon the right and authority of one class to force another to do what the master class require; an institution founded upon obligation and so tingeing all the framework of society, so incorporated in the social life of those parts of our country that it has led them to kindle the flames of this rebellion in which the fabric of our Government is sought to be consumed.
“Now, my friends, this is the cause of the rebellion. Let us hope that from these flames the cause for which we are struggling will come forth like gold from the furnace, purified from the base alloy of that principle of pollution, and that, when this war is ended, we shall be one people and nation with homogeneous institutions, a nation worthy of the smile of heaven, with a long career of peace and prosperity before it, a career extending through centuries yet unknown.”
“War, war, with all its horrors, with all its passions, with all the frightful array of physical and moral evil which it carries in its train; war following on the footsteps of peace, the art of destruction carried to proportions never reached before; in an age when men have devoted themselves with an intelligence and an ardor never known before to the elevation and emancipation of the human race — why war at such a time? It is because we have received a principle and refused its consequences. Our lathers waged war for a hundred years, a fierce contest for the right of every man to the product of his own labor, and ended it by an eight years war with the most powerful nation of Europe and came off victorious in the contest. We received the legacy but refused to fulfil the conditions of the bequest. We accepted the Declaration of Independence, but refused to carry it out to its logical conclusion. But that conclusion, those consequences have followed us. They are here; they are all around us, constraining us, compelling us, overmastering us, leaving us no loophole of escape, no alternative but frank, free, full acceptance.
But the Union and the Declaration of Independence would make it a union of freemen, free by inalienable right, free because made in the image of their God, all equal before the law, all equally firm, equally ardent in the defence of the rights of all mankind as inseparable portions of their own.”
Twenty-five years before, when he came to this city there were but three or four physicians who openly practiced Homoeopathy; but isolated as they were from the medical world, unsustained and unsupported they overcame the immense amount of prejudice, and the results of their labors were seen in the gathering this evening.
If he was an astronomer, he said, he would be better able to speak of the constellations. As every star, so each of our societies, shines by its own light, differing however in brilliancy one from another. One society could be compared to a single star or individual effort and not shed its lustre far, but from the constellation of the stars we might judge what we should gain from associated effort, such as state and national associations. As in the system of astronomy we might have for a sun in this country our national association to which State Societies might be tributary; to the State Organizations in turn the County Societies might be tributary.”
“I do not suppose any one will question the literary rank or the critical acumen of Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes, of Boston. Dr. Holmes says, that the literature of Homoeopathy consists of a hundred or so of pamphlets which resemble each other like so many spelling books. If this be true, the less we say of our literature the better. But I think if we take a fair view of the subject, we shall find that the homoeopathic literature is quite as ancient and no less respectable than that of which Dr. Holmes boasts for medicine at large. The word of God is much older than king James' Bible, much older than the Hebrew Pentateuch. It began to be uttered when light was separated from darkness and land from water. It has been heard ever since in the physical and sensible universe down to our day. Compared with this venerable age, how short a time is occupied by the written word which is the summing up and explication of all that went before.
“Now if we take the same view of homoeopathic literature — and I think we are justified in taking it — we may hold that wherever, in any age, any medical author has expounded and maintained any one of the great fundamental doctrines that we now call the doctrines of Homoeopathy, we may put him down in the homoeopathic bibliography. And we shall have a very illustrious line, beginning with Hippocrates, who expressly stated the homoeopathic formula. Then we had Haller, who insisted on ascertaining the properties of drugs by proving them upon the healthy person. Then we put down Sydenham, who said that diseases were to be treated not by acting on pathological hypotheses, but by singling or finding out a specific, which he says is the true way, and he himself made the boast that before he died — which however turned out to be ill-founded — that he would discover a method of finding out a specific for every individual case. For all that we put his name down on the catalogue of our leaders in illustrious capitals and surround it with a wreath. Then John Hunter who taught the specific affinity of poisons for certain organs and tissues, each alter its kind, saying that poisons each go to their seats in the body as if they were allotted to them. Then if we come down to later times, Pereira insists upon the necessity of proving drugs upon the healthy person. And every page of Pereira's great work on Materia Medica contains proof and testimony to the truth of the homoeopathic law of prescribing.
“And last of all, I think, we cannot refuse to put down Dr. Holmes himself. Because when Dr. Holmes sums up the duty of the practitioner of medicine in these words: 'He should seek out and prove all methods, both new and old, and should select in his practice that which promises best for usefulness;' that is the whole spirit and purpose and theory of Homoeopathy. His name will have to go down. And now with Hippocrates, Haller, Sydenham, Hunter, Pereira and Holmes. I will let Dr. Holmes himself decide if we have not an illustrious literature.”
”Our Medical College, may they ever be conducted in a true philanthropic spirit, bearing high the standard of professional attainment, and ever find a generous support from the profession and enlightened public.”
“Why is it that our branch of the medical profession, containing among its adherents so much wealth and talent and refinement of the world, has obtained so small a proportion in the great public charities of the nation? The question is easily answered. We could hardly expect that a material age in years gone by would comprehend the beauties of a system appealing so strongly as it does to man's inward nature, yet embraced as it was by men of mind, by divines and scholars, and poets and statesmen in different parts of the world these great truths progressed downwards through the different planes of intellect, through different classes, until they have at length permeated the whole mass, and the old school has become so far affected with the truths of the new philosophy as almost to have reached over and clasped hands with us on our own platform.
Volunteer toasts were given and responses made by Drs. E. M. Kellogg, D. D. Smith, R. C. Moffat, S. B. Barlow, A. S. Ball, H. G. Dunnell, B. F. Bowers, and others. The remarks of Dr. Smith brought out many personal reminiscences from Drs. Gray, Wells and Ball, which were listened to with great attention. In response to ”The Memory of Dr. Alfred Freeman,“Dr. Dunnell gave a very interesting account of his conversion to the new school, his trials and persecution.
|Source:||The American Homoeopathic Review Vol. 03 No. 11, 1863, pages 515-528|
|Description:||Miscellaneous; Gold; Titanium; Sharp's Materia Medica - Gold and Titanium; Anniversary of Hahnemann's Birthday|
|Editing:||errors only; interlinks; formatting|