Proving Symptoms of homeopathy medicine Bryonia, described by Richard Hughes in his book, A Cyclopedia of Drug Pathogenesis, published in 1895….


Including B. alba. L., white bryony; and B. dioica. Nat. Ord., Cucurbitaceae.


1. HAHNEMANN, Mat. Medorrhinum Pura, vol, ii of original, vol. i of translation. Contains 781 symptoms from self and six fellow provers.

2 a. Dr. ARNETH, Sept. 18th, 1844, took fasting in m. 20 dr. tinc. of B. alba. Soon after, bitter taste and eructation, dull headache in frontal and temporal regions, and after about 10 m. peculiar shivery feeling. On 20th, 30 dr. Bitter eructations lasting about 10 m. During last 3 d. stools appeared to be softer than usual. At intervals during 30 h. somewhat severe bruised feeling extending from false ribs on left side to umbilicus. On 23rd 40 dr.; no symptoms. On 27th, fasting, 50 dr. Eructations tasting of B lasting about 1/4 h. Immediately afterwards headache on well-defined spot of supra – orbital region lasting 10 m. On 29th 50 dr.; no symptoms. On Oct. 1st, fasting, 70 dr.; notwithstanding careful observation, did not notice any morbid symptoms till 3 or 4 p.m. Towards this time, after moving about not more than usual, severe pressive pain in forehead, especially in supra-orbital regions, pain being more severe than he had ever felt. During n. (from Oct. 5th to 6th) was very restless, sleeping barely 1/2 h. at a time, and during disturbed sleep was busy with what he had been reading the previous e. Each time he awoke felt dull pressure in umbilical region, but soon relapsed into a doze, during which his previous dreams recurred; and this experience was constantly repeated until he awoke on m. of 6th, with violent urging to stool, Motion was sudden, partly fluid and partly solid. In course of d. had 3 or 4 similar motions; but tongue was clean, taste natural, and appetite good. Throughout, however, felt somewhat prostrated. On 7th was well, except for tendency to diarrhoea, especially induced by exposure to a draught; also pressive pain in forehead brought on each time after prolonged reading. On 8th occasionally itching (lasting several seconds) of joint of 1st and 2nd phalanges of fingers of left hand; this without any discoverable cause. The great tendency to frontal headache continued. On 9th, 57 dr., no symptoms.

2 b. On Oct. 20th, in m., 100 dr. of tinc. The same d., but especially on 21st, had feeling as if bladder was not quite emptied, and after urinating there remained a feeling of heaviness in region of bladder and also cramp – like movements of that viscus. On 22nd, after writing for some time, noticed that 3rd finger of right hand almost lost power; he therefore rested for a while. On returning to his writing-table, however, after a certain time the powerless feeling was even more marked. On 23rd, this finger was considerably swollen and painful on pressure and still more on movement; joints of 1st and 2nd phalanx were most affected. On 24th, 5th finger of same hand was similarly attacked, though not so severely. At 2 p.m. A. took 210 dr. of tinct. The feeling of nausea lasted only a short time. Much less oppression of head than after earlier doses. On 25th, 220 dr. in m. No symptoms except slight heaviness of head. [Dr. Arneth subsequently proved the 203rd dilution, and had an inflammation of the external ear which, being a unique occurrence, we are unable to ascribe to the drug. – Eds.]

3. Dr. GUBATTA began his proving of B. alba May 18 th, 1844, with 10 dr. of ]tinct. On 19th took 15dr. On 20th, 20dr. Troublesome constipation and slight headache. On 21st, 25dr. Constipation continues. On 22nd, 30dr. Violent urging to stool, followed by small, hard motion. On 23rd, at 6.30 a.m., anguish in region of heart, but without affecting its action; uneasy feeling and constriction of chest; short oppressed breathing, – these symptoms lasting till midday. 24th. – Without medicine; no symptoms; 25th. – Constipation, great oppression of heart. On 27th took 50 dr., and repeated this dose May 28th, 30th, and 31st, June 2nd, 3rd 4th, 5th, and 6th. May 27th. – The bowels have not acted for 5 d. 28th.- Soon after taking medicine gurgling and rumbling in bowels, severe griping, followed by two watery evacuations at short intervals. 30th. – Abdomen feels much drawn in. At intervals gurgling and griping, with fruitless urging to stool. 31st. – Frequent urging to stool, without result; great prostration, morose humour (contrary to his usual disposition and without any cause). June 1st. – Constipation; mental state the same. 2nd. – Rumbling and griping in bowels, followed quickly by 10 to 12 watery evacuations within 1h. 3rd. – Griping with pressure, no stool. 4th. – Griping, great prostration and feeling of fatigue. 5th. – Soon after taking medicine sudden rigor, followed in 1/2 h. by heat; therewith tired feeling in all limbs; distressing headache; weight in head and giddiness, continual nausea, so breathless that he could scarcely utter a word, excited and rapid action of heart. He was obliged to go to bed at 9 a.m., and free perspiration ensued after a little while, during which above mentioned symptoms gradually passed off in the same order in which they had occurred; only giddiness persisted for a short time. At 9:30 G. was quite well again and able to leave his bed. In afternoon a feeling of prostration, followed by two watery evacuations without urging. On 6th recurrence of all symptoms, in the same order and lasting same time; only the prostration and nausea more marked. After a short rest on a couch these symptoms again subsided, leaving only exhaustion and mental depression, which lasted the whole day. 7th. – Without medicine; ‘ no action of bowels, otherwise well during d. 8th. – Without medicine; two watery evacuations in e. On 9th and 10th loud rumbling in bowels, colicky pains, constipation and diarrhoea alternately. This irregularity in action of bowels continued some time (his ordinary habit being a daily normal evacuation).

4 a. Dr. WILLIAM HUBER, aet. 38, of strong constitution, sanguine temperament; had abdominal typhus when a youth, and since then has been healthy except for occasional sore throat and diarrhoea. He prepared from the tinct. of B dioica ten decimal dilutions, and began his experiments with these on March 18th, 1844. He took first the 10th dil., and rose gradually, using each attenuation for 3 d., dose being 3j at 7 a.m. During proving he gave up coffee, but in other respects adhered to his ordinary simple and regular diet.

He Observes; ” In n., March 18th to 19th. I awoke at 1 with pain in thighs, dull pressive pain in occipital region and goose- skin; fell asleep again in 1/2 h., but was half-conscious of doing so, and struggled against it as if it were a faint. From 19th to 26th, no symptoms. In n. 26th to 27th, waking occasionally, with pressive drawing pains in back and thighs, so that turning round was difficult. 27th, in m., slight action of bowels. 28th. – No symptoms. 29th, m., 1/2 h. after taking dose (7th attenuation), great dryness of lips, back of tongue, and palate. At 11 a.m. shooting, tensive pain in ligaments of left shoulder-joint, less felt when at rest, but no active movement hurt as if dislocated. 30th, m. in bed (1/2 h. after taking 3j of 5th dil.0, of 5th dil.), beneath wall of right hypochondrium sharp stitch passing towards epigastrium. About 12 severe twinge of pain in right lumbar region. 31st. – Soon after taking medicine, qualmishness, felt especially on right side, followed by slight eructation, alternating with collection of saliva in mouth. Painful stiffness of finger joints of right hand, worse on bending. April 1st and 2nd. – No symptoms except this stiffness. April 3rd, m., while in bed, tearing pain in r. hypochondrium for 10 m. passing off with rumbling in upper part of abdomen, at same time scraping sensation (as of deranged stomach). In n., April 3rd to 4th, frequent confused dreams of fighting. 4th, m., tardy stool (rather unusual for him); throughout d. painful stiffness of r. hand, especially on movement; painful pressure over a space (of the breadth of a hand) on r. mammary region, most felt on expiration; at same time dull, pressive in r. femoral region. From April 5th to 13th, no symptoms. 14th, m., 1/2 h. after taking medicine, scraping sensation in stomach, tasteless eructation and rumbling in upper part of abdomen. April 15th, m., 1/2 h. after taking medicine painful tension under false ribs in r. hypochondrium, lasting about 10 m., and felt especially when taking deep breath. About noon, restless eructations. April 15th to 16th, awoke at 4 a.m., feeling as if he had had the full amount of sleep. When lying on abdomen feeling as of an inflated bladder (of size of a man’s fist) under and pressing out abdominal wall in umbilical region, without pain or hardness. This feeling was less marked in back. It recurred frequently during and after proving. On e. of 16th and m. of 17th, slight diarrhoea.

4 b. On April 17th, Dr. H. began experiments with tinct., and from this date to May 16th took 901 dr. On 17th, at 7 a.m., took 6 dr. in a spoonful of water, and increased dose gradually up to 18 dr. on the 20th, but without any apparent effects. on 21st, 20 dr.; towards e. frequent tasteless eructations, rumbling in bowels, and discharge of offensive flatus. 22nd, in m., 20 dr.; after 1 h. painful twitching in temple over the eye, recurring at frequent intervals; sharp stitch deep in right hypochondrium; painful pressure and feeling of fulness in the loins. About 2 p.m., a somewhat hard stool. 24th, at 7 a.m., 25 dr.; after 4 h. severe cutting or shooting pains in cardiac region, not lasting long at a time, but recurring at frequent intervals; 1/2 h. afterwards, painless throbbing (like a tendon or muscle twitching) somewhat to left of epigastrium in or immediately beneath abdominal wall (occasionally). About 3 p.m., a hardish stool with tendency to eructation. At 8 p.m., several eructations without taste or odour. At 9:30 p.m., While in bed, sudden sickness, recurring frequently; increased flow of saliva, and, without any apparent cause, rancid taste and scraping sensation in stomach. Soon afterward, dry, burning heat without preceding chill, dryness of tongue, lips, and palate, thirst, and feeling of general prostration, especially in limbs, pulse feverishly quick and full, skin harsh and dry, loud ringing in ears. He fell asleep in this state and had many troubled and confused dreams in which he developed great activity; awoke at 5:30 a.m., feeling quite well except for aching pain in loins. 25th, in m., took 25 dr. After 1 h. painful stiffness in l. hand and forearm involving ligaments and aponeuroses. During n., again many active dreams. In m., while in bed, pain in region of right kidney, lasting only a short time. 26th, in m., took 25dr. After 3 h. drawing, bursting headache in l. frontal and occipital regions which came on whilst walking, of short duration. 27th, in m., took 30 dr. After 1 h., beating, stretching pain deep in r. lumbar region just over haunch-bone, lasting only 2 or 3 m., but recurring twice at short intervals. Soon afterwards pricking itching under r. upper eyelid (as from a hair), disappearing on rubbing. About 9 a.m., stretching and drawing pain on anterior surface or right thigh just below Poupart’s ligament, subsiding for a few m. during rest and then recurring. At 7:30 p.m., painful stiffness of middle joint of right middle finger, aggravated by bending and diminished by rubbing. On 28th, about 6:30 a.m., sharp, momentary stitch in right hypochondrium, immediately thereafter similar sensation in epigastrium. After 15 m. painful drawing and stretching in left frontal region over eyebrows as of band tied round forehead. Took 35 dr. After 3 h. eructations, gurgling in left side near stomach; momentary stitch in left hypochondrium with painful tenderness, especially on firm pressure or deep inspiration. 29th, 40 dr. After 1/2 h. scraping sensation in; stomach with tendency to eructation, nausea, vertigo, frequent yawning during 2 h. 30th, 40 dr. Same symptoms. May 1st 40 dr. In afternoon severe pricking (as if with needles) on under surface of third and fourth toes of right foot; on waking during n., when he was feverish, pulse much quickened hearing very sensitive; could not sleep well again. 2nd, 45 dr. Nausea, inclination to vomiting, constant eructation, confusion of head the whole forenoon, aggravated at times, and accompanied with chilly feeling in back, at same time throat felt as if compressed by broad band round it; frequent yawning. After dinner tasteless eructation, vertigo, and confusion of head, slight drawing pain in left frontal region. About 3 p.m. gurgling in abdomen, followed by moderate pappy stool and considerable discharge of odorless flatus. Face pale. 3rd,,50 dr. (in m.). After 1 h. same symptoms as yesterday m., only chills more frequent and severe. At 2.300 p.m., diarrhoeic greenish stool. 7th, 55 dr. Same symptoms as on m. of 2nd and 3rd; attacks of chills and nausea every 5 to 10 m. At 3 p.m., stitch-like prick of needle right side of neck just over sternal end of clavicle. 8th, 60dr. Immediately on taking dose, nausea and shuddering. After 2h. drawing pain over left eyebrow, slight at first but gradually increasing in severity, and lasting from 10 to 15 seconds, recurring every 5 or 10 m., scraping sensation in stomach and rancid taste like commencing heartburn, with tensive pain in right hypochondrium. About 1/2 h. afterwards rumbling in bowels, rather severe cutting colicky pains in left side of abdomen, followed by discharge of flatus, cramp-like on pain in left calf. About noon tensive pressive pain in right lumbar region and in both gluteal regions. After diner slight colic, followed by great discharge of flatus, and later by pappy evacuation. At 3 p.m., drawing pain over right eyebrow, and 1 h. later somewhat severe stitch in left chest under mamma, and needle-like stitches in scrobiculus cordis, only on deep inspiration or bending body to r. Slept quietly during n. In m., on waking, slight pain in l. tonsil and feeling of fulness in loins; urine of a dark or brownish colour. 9th, 70 dr. After 1/2 h. dryness of cavity of mouth except point of tongue, scraping sensation in stomach, disgust, nausea and vomiting frequently recurring, somewhat severe tensive pain on lower third of right forearm, alternating with tensive pain in left knee. Between 7 and 8 a.m., 1/2 h. after getting up, dulness of head; nausea; fine stitches in scrobiculus cordis, worse when moving a few seconds. At 8, tension and aching in right shoulder-joint while at rest; painful drawing in whole forehead with dulness and confusion of head; scraping irritation in bronchial tubes inducing dry cough, afterwards brownish pappy evacuation. At 9, rumbling in epigastrium (1.), slight eructation and nausea, tensive pain in left hip. 1 h. after dinner painless slimy diarrhoea. The angina tonsillaris with which he awoke in m. continued in less degree all d. and there was also a small aphthous erosion on mucous membrane of upper lip. At 6 p.m., painful drawing and tension in right forehead and posterior portion of right parietal bone, lasting 10 to 15 seconds, and alternating with similar pain on left side of head. 8 p.m., sensibility disturbed, dulness, general prostration, burning heat of both feet as if immersed in hot water up to ankles, painful stitches in heels and corns, stiffness of lower extremities and nape of neck; pains (felt only when moving) in different parts, as in l. knee, l. hip, and in loins; at same time fluent coryza, shivering stretching of limbs, and frequent yawning; deafness of left ear as if stopped up; pulse full, strong, and quickened; urine somewhat burning; in this state H. went to bed, drank two glasses of raspberry vinegar, and lay till 9, when he was suddenly seized with shivering induced merely by raising the bedclothes when he turned in bed; convulsive twitching of muscles of back, chest, and abdomen, and shaking of limbs. The rigor seemed to concentrate in chest, lasted about 10 m., and recurred whenever body was moved. After 1/4 h. this was succeeded by dry heat extending over whole body; hands, feet, and face especially burning, vascular system much excited, pulse over 100; confusion of head, pressive pain in occiput and nape; roaring in left ear; severe coryza, l. nostril stopped up, flow of watery fluid from the right; slight angina tonsillaris; thirst; loss of appetite; transient stitches (as if in pleura) under left mamma; aching in loins; persistent erection of penis, but without sexual desire; fine stitch in left testicle; drawing pain in lower third of right forearm. During this hot stage H. fell asleep, awoke at midnight in profuse perspiration, and feeling quite cheerful as if all his troubles had been charmed away. The mucous discharge from nose (cold in the head); looser, and of a whitish-yellow colour, smelling of newly-baked bread; pulse quieter. After about 1 h. perspiration was less, he fell asleep again, had confused dreams, and awoke at 6 a.m. feeling prostrate; pulse somewhat quick; confusion of head; slight drawing pain in forehead, and pressive aching in occipital region; skin sensitive; urine brownish without sediment; aphthae on inner surface of lip bleeding; shooting pains in urethra; tensive pain extending from r. testicle along spermatic cord and to groin. 10th. – Confusion of head whole forenoon; very bitter taste as of tinct., but only at point of tongue (circumscribed); in afternoon frequent shooting pains in l. dorsal region, but especially severe in l. side of chest, and l. nipple, aggravated by moving body or bending back l. arm. 11th. – On awaking general perspiration. Urine showed a deep-brown cloud. During day slight pressive aching in both gluteal regions. 12th, m., scraping sensation at lower end of windpipe causing dry cough. 13th. – H. took 80 dr. of tinct. in m. After 1/2 h. scraping sensation in stomach, eructation, grumbling in bowels, feeling of nausea from stomach with shuddering, and convulsive twitching of abdominal muscles, especially at epigastrium. Nausea and vomiting the whole forenoon at intervals of 10 or 15 m.; head caused; gloomy; tensive pain on anterior surface of r. thigh just under Poupart’s ligament, slight pain in l. hip, pressive aching in nape (l.). All pains are increased by movement. About 11 a.m. sudden colicky pain in r. side of abdomen somewhat under umbilicus, shooting pinching pains lasting some m., followed by discharge of flatus. After intervals of 15 m. these attacks recurred twice. After dinner slight painless diarrhoea (greenish-brown fluid); afterwards pinching pain from r. hypochondrium towards stomach lasting some seconds; pricking or itching in outer canthus of l. eye. About 4 p.m. slight aching in l. forehead and occiput, with slight tension in r. side of neck just under larynx, and shooting or itching on general integument. 14th, 60 dr. at 7 a.m. After 1 h. scraping sensation in throat and stomach with shuddering; pains in l. knee-joint only felt when moving. At 9, transitory burning pain over spot size of crown on r. side of chest (ribs); stiffness of r. hand and fingers. At 11.30, pressive pain in l. occiput, and transient shooting pain in l. heel. Colicky pain during and after midday meal. After dinner painless diarrhoea. At 2 p.m., itching of edges of r. eyelid relieved by rubbing. At 3, tensive pain in first phalangeal joint of r. index finger lasting some seconds (at rest), painless (muscular) twitching of l. abdominal wall between navel and false ribs; afterwards shooting pains deep in l. side of back lasting 5 or 6 m., followed by severe stitches on inner side of r. heel. 15th, 100 dr. After 1/4 h. sharp, rancid feeling in stomach; shooting, scraping sensation as of a thorn in the part over over 7th cervical vertebra, only felt when moving. After 1 h. great sickness, shivering feeling in back and all over body; yawning; great inclination to vomiting. All symptoms aggravated by moving; obliged to go to bed. At this time increased flow of tasteless saliva in mouth, great giddiness and confusion of head, numb feeling in occiput with sensation as if head, were enlarged; determination of blood to head, flushing of face, continued nausea, frequent twitching and convulsive movements of abdominal muscles on r. side, stuffy cold (suddenly) and roaring in l. ear with feeling as if it were stopped up and hearing impaired; obliged to keep very quiet, as nausea and vomiting occurred on least attempt to move. At same time scraping sensation at bifurcation of windpipe, causing dry cough. At 10 a.m., severe tensive and stretching pain on l. side of forehead over eyebrow, lasting some m. Before dinner colicky pinching pain at umbilicus, followed by discharge of flatus. After 1/2 h. diarrhoea (green, slimy) followed by noisy discharge of flatus. At 3 p.m., itching smarting in l. inner canthus and feeling as of sand in l. eye. At 4, pain over spot (size of crown) on r. side of chest under axilla, increased by movement; frequent tearing pain at inner side of left heel, lasting 5 or 6 m.; tensive shooting pain deep in r. lumbar region. At 6, diarrhoea. 16th. – Several empty eructations and two soft motions during d. 17th. – Tensive pain in l. forehead; slight feeling of oppression of breathing at upper sternal region, with shooting pains in anterior wall of chest induced by every movement and lasting some m.; intense bitter taste (as of B.) on tongue, although no medicine had been taken for 2 d. During whole proving, which lasted two months, his disposition was more irritable than usual, any contradiction easily exciting anger. The sexual instinct was rather increased than diminished. (Ibid.)

Richard Hughes
Dr. Richard Hughes (1836-1902) was born in London, England. He received the title of M.R.C.S. (Eng.), in 1857 and L.R.C.P. (Edin.) in 1860. The title of M.D. was conferred upon him by the American College a few years later.

Hughes was a great writer and a scholar. He actively cooperated with Dr. T.F. Allen to compile his 'Encyclopedia' and rendered immeasurable aid to Dr. Dudgeon in translating Hahnemann's 'Materia Medica Pura' into English. In 1889 he was appointed an Editor of the 'British Homoeopathic Journal' and continued in that capacity until his demise. In 1876, Dr. Hughes was appointed as the Permanent Secretary of the Organization of the International Congress of Homoeopathy Physicians in Philadelphia. He also presided over the International Congress in London.