Theory of the Dynamization of Medicine


It is impossible so to separate the dynamization theory from the doctrines respecting the doses as to be able to treat of the one without reference to the other….


The dynamization theory not essential to homoeopathy-Hahnemann first hint of it-Solution increases the power of the drug by bringing it to bear on more points of the living fibre-Difference between the action of a hard, dry pill and a solution of the same medicine-Medicine act dynamically not atomically-Hahnemann asserts the greater power of the smaller portion of medicine in solution-Curious piece of dynamical arithmetic-An imitation of Brown’s scale of excitability-Futility of all such calculations- Further development of the dynamization theory- Wonderful effects of succession and trituration-The homoeopathic attenuations are said not to weaken but to exalt the medicinal power-The power of the attenuation proportioned to the number of succussions they have received-His fear of over-succussing-No need for dilution- He loses his fear for hyper dynamizing-Wonderful effects of dynamizing-Frequent alteration of Hahnemann’s views-His disciples better the instruction of the master-Korsakoff’s infected globules- Hahnemann’s reply to Korsakoff-Gross gives his adhesions to Korsakoff- And goes beyond him-Plaubel is favourable to infection-Jenichen’s high potencies-Disclosure of his undivulged secret-Plumbum the beginning and the end of Jenichen’s celebrity-Gross becomes Jenichen’s trumpeter-Boenninghausen kills two dogs without a stone-Hering’s Hahnemannism-His aerial potencies-Tietze ascribes dynamization to electricity- Investigations with the microscope-Segin’s investigations- Mayrhofer’s observations- Microscopic appearance of attenuations of gold, silver, mercury, iron, lead copper, tin, zinc, arsenic- mayrhofer’s deductions-Koch’s examination of mercury-Rummel’s illusions with the 200th dilution.


IN former lectures I have already warned you that we should find that Hahnemann had aggregated round the homoeopathic principle a number of theories and doctrines which had been disputed by many of his disciples, and which might all be proved to be utterly valueless., without detracting in the slightest degree from the truth and excellence of the homoeopathic principle.

The subject of to-night’s lecture belong to those theories and doctrines which Hahnemann subsequently engrafted on his therapeutic law, but which are by no means necessary to that law, and accordingly we may, without incurring the change of high treason to homoeopathy, or without forfeiting our claims to be considered homoeopathists, freely subject it to the searching light of criticism, and accept it if we find it accords with reason and truth, or reject it under opposite circumstances.

As I have done with others of Hahnemann’s theories and peculiar views, I shall endeavour to trace historically the development of the theory of dynamization, as I find it from a close and careful study of Hahnemann’s writings from the earliest period to the latest.

It is impossible so to separate the dynamization theory from the doctrines respecting the doses as to be able to treat of the one without reference to the other; indeed, we shall find that the doses Hahnemann latterly advised owed their excessive exiguity, or this theory was devised to explain the effects of small doses.

In his first essay announcing the discovery of a new therapeutic principle, published in 1796, no allusion is made to any doses different from those in ordinary use, nor is there any mention made of any peculiarity in the mode of preparing the medicines; consequently nothing is said about dynamization. In an essay published the following year we still observe no peculiarity on these points, and in his writing up to 1801 nothing is to be found to lead us to suppose that there was anything exceptional in his made of employing drugs, save that he used them in accordance with the law he had enunciated in 1796, and advised that every medicine should only be given singly and alone.

It is in his little work on Scarlet Fever, published in 1801, that we have the first forebodings of an unusual mode of preparing the medicines, of the infinitesimal doses and of the dynamization-theory. The dose of opium there recommended for the treatment of a certain form of the scarlet fever is very small compared with the ordinary dose, and the tincture of opium is to be prepared by intimate mixture of the opium with the alcohol, by well shaking the bottle in which the solution is performed. He lays particular stress on the intimate mixture as well of the opium with the alcohol as of the tincture thus prepared with the vehicle-water or beer-in which it was to be administered. The object of the dilution in this case seems, however, to be solely to diminish the size and power of the dose; and there is no question as yet of any increase of power by the intimate mixture by means of the succussion employed.

R.E. Dudgeon
Robert Ellis Dudgeon 1820 – 1904 Licentiate of the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh in 1839, Robert Ellis Dudgeon studied in Paris and Vienna before graduating as a doctor. Robert Ellis Dudgeon then became the editor of the British Journal of Homeopathy and he held this post for forty years.
Robert Ellis Dudgeon practiced at the London Homeopathic Hospital and specialised in Optics.
Robert Ellis Dudgeon wrote Pathogenetic Cyclopaedia 1839, Cure of Pannus by Innoculation, London and Edinburgh Journal of Medical Science 1844, Hahnemann’s Organon, 1849, Lectures on the Theory & Practice of Homeopathy, 1853, Homeopathic Treatment and Prevention of Asiatic Cholera 1847, Hahnemann’s Therapeutic Hints 1847, On Subaqueous Vision, Philosophical Magazine, 1871, The Influence of Homeopathy on General Medical Practice Since the Death of Hahnemann 1874, Repertory of the Homeopathic Materia Medica, 2 vols 1878-81, The Human Eye Its Optical Construction, 1878, Hahnemann’s Materia Medica Pura, 1880, The Sphygmograph, 1882, Materia Medica: Physiological and Applied 1884, Hahnemann the Founder of Scientific Therapeutics 1882, Hahnemann’s Organon 1893 5th Edition, Prolongation of Life 1900, Hahnemann’s Lesser Writing.