Hahnemann’s proving symptoms of homeopathy remedy Carbo Vegetabilis from Materia Medica Pura, which Samuel Hahnemann wrote between 1811 to 1821 …

(Wood- charcoal.)

(From vol. vi, 2nd edit., 1827.)

(The charcoal of any kind of wood, thoroughly heated to redness, manifests a uniformity in its effects on the human health, after adequate disengagement and development (potentization) of its innate medicinal spirit by trituration with a non-medicinal substance(e.g. milk-sugar.) in the manner. I have recorded above when speaking of carbo animalis. I employed the charcoal of birch wood. Some of the provings of others were made with the charcoal of red beech wood.)

From the earliest times physicians have considered charcoal to be non-medicial and powerless.Empiricism only placed among the ingredients of her highly composite powders for epilepsy, the charcoal of lime-wood, without being able to adduce any evidence of the efficacy of this substance by itself. It is only in recent times, since LOWITZ, of St. Petersburg, discovered the chemical properties of wood charcoal, especially its power of removing from putrid and mouldy substances their bad smell, and of preserving fluids from foetid odours, that physicians began to employ it externally. They advised rinsing of the mouth with powdered charcoal in cases of foeter of the breath, the application of the same powdered charcoal in cases of foeter of the breath, the application of the same powder to putrid ulcers, and in both cases the foeter was immediately removed. Administered internally in the dose of several drachms, it removed the evil odour of the stools in autumnal dysentery.

But this is merely a chemical use of wood-charcoal, for it takes away the foul odour of putrid water when mixed with it in lumps not pulverised, and indeed it does so most effectually in coarse fragments.

This medicinal employment of it was, as I have said, merely a chemical one, and not at all a dynamical employment penetrating into the inner vital sphere. The mouth rinsed out with it only remained free from foeter for a few hours. The evil emll of the mouth returned everyday. The old ulcer was not improved by it and the foeter, chemically removed from it for the moment, always recurred. The powder ingested in autumnal dysentery removed the foeter of the stools chemically for but a short time; the disease remained and the disgusting smell of the stools soon returned.

In such a coarse pulverised state charcoal can exercise almost none other than a chemical action. A considerable quantity of wood charcoal may be swallowed in its ordinary crude condition without producing the slightest alternation of the health.

It is only by prolonged trituration of the charcoal (as of many other dead and apparently powerless substances) with a non-medicinal substance, such as milk-sugar, that its inner concealed, and in the crude state latent and, so to speak, slumbering dynamical medicinal power can be awakened and brought into life. This can be effected by triturating one grain of wood-charcoal for an hour with 100 grains of milk-sugar; but its power will be developed still more vivaciously and powerfully if one grain of this powder be triturated for the same length of time with 100 grain of this last powder be again trituratedfor an hour with another 100 grains of milk-sugar. In this way a million-fold powder – attenuation is produced, a small portion of a grain of which moistened with a drop of water and ingested produces great medicinal effects and derangement of the human health.

The following peculiar, pure effects of wood-charcoal on the human health were caused by the ingestion of a few grains of this million-fold powder-attenuation of wood-charcoal. Its medicinal powers can be developed in a still higher degree by a further trituration with 100 parts of fresh milk-sugar; but for homoeopathic medicinal usea stronger potentization of wood-charcoal than the million-fold attenuation should by no means be employed.

The occasional production in sensitive patients of too energetic action from a small dose of this preparation is soon diminished by smelling several times at a saturated solution of camphor in alcohol, and apparently completely removed by frequent repetitions of the olfaction.

The symptoms marked (Ad.) are furnished by Russian physician, Dr ADAM; those marked (Gff.) by State-Counillor Baron VON GERSDOREFF, of Eisenach, and the few symptoms marked (Cas.) by DR.CASPARI, of Leipzig.

[The records of traditional medicine have contributed no symptoms to this proving.

This medicine first appears in the 2nd Edit., where it has 723 symptoms; in the Chr. Kr. there are1189.]


Whirling in the head (aft. 24 h.).

Vertigo on rapidly moving the head (aft. 4 d.).

Whirling all day long.

Vertigo so that he must hold on to something(aft. 15 d.).

5. On waking, vertigo and staggering.

Vertigo when stooping, as if the head wagged to and fro.

Vertigo in bed, after waking from sleep.

In the evening, after sleeping when sitting, he was giidy, with trembling and vibration in the whole body, and on rising from a seat, as if faint, which continued for a quarter of an hour even while lying.

(Pain rising from the stomach into the head, which took away her senses for a short time).

10. Vertigo, only when sitting, as if the head swayed to and fro.

Sudden loss of memory; he could not remember what he had just said to someone nor what the latter had said to him. [Ad.]

Slow march of the ideas, which always turn round one subject; at the same time sensation as if the head was too tightly bound (aft. 2 h.). [Ad.]

Confusion of head; thinking is difficult for him.

In the morning, immediately after rising, great confusion of the head; he cannot think well, and must collect himself with diffuculty as if out of a dream; it went off after lying down again. [Gff.]

15. Confusion of the occiput, as after a debauch.[Ad.]

Headache; dizzy as after a debauch, which spreads from the occiput to the front, increases towards evening, and involves the whole head, is also aggravated by walking. [Ad.]

Confusion of the occiput, more like a tension towards the outside (aft. ½ h.). [Ad.]

Stupid feeling in the head after waking from the midday sleep. [Ad.]

Sensation in the head as on the occurrence of coryza.

20. Headache involving the whole right side of the head and face (with chilliness, coldness, and tremlbing of the body and jaws).

Dulness and heaviness before the forehead. [Gff.]

A dull headache in the occiput. [Gff.]

Heaviness in the head.

Pain in the head as if too full.

25. Pressure in the occiput, especially after supper. [Ad.]

On and in the occiput, quite low down, violent pressive pain. [Gff.]

Constant pressive pain on the crown, during which the hairs are painful when touched. [Gff.]

Pain in the crown of the head, with painfulness of the hairs when touched. [Gff.]

Aching pain in the upper part of the right side of occiput, with aching in the eyes.

30. Aching pain in the forehad, especially just above the eyes, which are painful when moved, all the afternoon. [Gff.]

Pressure on the top of the head every afternoon.

Pressive pain above the eyes, extending into the eyes. [Gff.]

Pressure in both temples and on top of the head.

Pressure from within outwards in the left temple, lasting several hours. [Ad.]

35. A pressure on the top of the head, the drawing all about the head, but chiefly on the left side.

Pressure and drawing in the head, by fits.

Aching pain on a small spot where there had been a wound in former times, on the right side of the forehead (aft. 4 h.). [Gff.]

Compressive headache.

A pressive as if something lay on the crown, or as if the inetguments of the head were constricted, which spreads thence over the forehead. [Ad.]

40. Headache, like a contraction of the integuments of the head, particularly after supper. [Ad.]

Headache, as from contraction of integuments of the head.

Contractive pain in the head, especially on movement.

The hat presses on the head like a heavy weight, and when he takes it off the sensation remains, as if the head was bound round with a cloth. [Ad.]

Spasmodic tension in the brain.

45. Rush of blood to the head.

Rush of blood to the head, hot forehead, and empty feeling in the he.

For five days severe headaches; on stooping feeling as of something would come out at the occiput and sinciput.

After a meal pulsating headache in the forehead, and pressure in the occiput, with heat in the head and eructation.

Throbbing headache in the evening in bed, with difficult respiration.

50. After waking from a profound long midday sleep a throbbing in the temples and fulness of the brain. [Ad.]

In the afternoon throbbing headache.

Twitching headache.

Very violent headache, throbbing as if gathering in the occiput, from morning till evening (aft. 9 d.).

During a persistent headache a place the size of a hand on the head is quite hot to the touch (aft. 4 d.).

55. In the evening in bed violent pressing and burning headache, especially on the crown and in front to the forehead. [Gff.]

In the morning on awaking in bed, in the right half of the head whereon he lay, and in the occiput, a violent headache of a smarting aching character, like what is felt in the nose during abortive sneezing, a pain that was only relieved by raising up the head, but which went off completely on rising from bed. [Gff.]

Cutting and squeezing headache above and behind the left ear. [Gff.]

Pinching headache in the occiput.

General painfulness of the surface of the brain, with stitches inwards here amd there.

60. Shooting upwards in the head towards the temples.

Some stitches in the forehead above the right outer canthus of the eye(aft. 2 h.). [Ad.]

Burning shooting on a small spot on the occiput. [Gff.]

Painful boring under the left temple.

Drawing pains here and there on the head (aft. 2 h.). [Gff.]

65. Drawing headache here and there, especially on the forehead to above the root of the nose. [Gff.]

On the right side of the occiput a frequently recurring, short, drawing pain (aft. 2.1/2 h.). [Gff.]

Tearing drawing superiorly on the fore part of the head. [Gff.]

On the left side of the occiput, on a small spot, a tearing through the head. [Gff.]

Drawing and tearing in the left side of the occiput (aft. 6 h.). [Gff.]

70. Tearing pain on the left side of the head above the temple (aft. 12 h.). [Gff.]

Frequent attacks of tearing pain in the interior of the head, towards the right temple. [Gff.]

Tearing in the left half of the head, starting from the left half of the nose. [Gff.]

Attacks of dull tearing headache on the crown and in the temples.[Gff.]

Tearing on the old scar of a sabre wound on the left side of the top of the head. [Gff.]

75. Tearing on the right side of the occiput (aft. 4 h.). [Gff.]

Tearing in the left half of the head, and at the same time a rheumatic drawing in the left arm. [Gff.]

Tearing in the temples that extends to the molar teeth. [Gff.]

Violent tearing on a small spot in the forehead, near the temple [Gff.]

Tearing in the bones of the head for four days (aft. 24 h.).

80. Formication on the integuments of the occiput, as if the hairs moved. [Ad.]

The hair of the head falls out very much.

On the forehead, near the hairy scalp, a red pimple, which pains as of sore only when pressed. [Gff.]

On the forehead, here and there, eruption of pimples, which are red, smooth, and painless. [Gff.]

Itching in the face, especially around the eyes.

85. Itching in the inner canthus of the left eye. [Gff.]

Smarting itching sensation, especially in the outer canthus of the right eye. [Gff.]

Itching in the left eye and smarting after rubbing, especially in the inner canthus. [Gff.]

Smarting in the inner canthus of the left eye. [Gff.]

Itching of the right eye, with great dryness of the lid(aft. 14 d.).

90. In the right eye great lachrymation and smarting (aft. 24 h.). [Gff.]

Smarting in the right eye with sore feeling, especially in the canthi, and aching in the eye as from a grain of sand. [Gff.]

Aching smarting sensation in the outer canthus of the right eye,. [Gff.]

Aching in the eyes, with confusion of the head (aft. 6.1/2 h.). [Gff.]

On the left eye a tearing pressure. [Gff.]

95. Painful pressure from above on the right eyeball (aft. ½ h.). [Gff.]

On moving in the open air a pressure in the upper lid and in the upper half of both eyeballs. [Ad.]

Obtuse pain in the left eye. [Gff.]

Swelling of the left eye.

The left eye-lids appear to him to be stuck together, which, however, is not the case.

100. At night she cannot open the eye-lids, though she could not go to sleep.

Inflammation of the right eye.

In the morning the eye-lids are stuck together.

The muscles of the eye are painful when he looks upwards. [Gff.]

Drawing in the right eye-lid (aft. 13 d.).

105. Drawing above the right through the head.

(During the headache pain in the eye as though it would be torn out.)

Quivering of the eye-lid. (aft. 9 d).

Extreme short-sightedness; he can only recognise and acquaintance when he comes within a couple of paces (aft. 3 d.).

Black spots before the eyes.

110. Glittering before the eyes, immediately on rising in the morning, for a quarter of an hour. [Gff.]

A weight upon the eyes so that he must make a great effort to see anything while reading and writnig.

In the afternoon great pallor of the face (aft. 9 d.).

Many pimples on the face and forehead (aft. 3 d.). [Cas.]

A white papule on the lower part of the cheek.

115. Swelling of the cheek.

Drawing pain in the cheek for two days (aft. 24 h.).

Pain in the left side of the cheek as if something burned and bored round about in it, in a jerking manner, by fits (aft. 6 d.).

Fine tearing prick on the right cheek (aft. 3 h.) [Gff.]

Pain of the bones of the face of the upper and lower jaw.

120. Tearing in the face.

Tearing pain on the left angle of the mouth and thence into the cheek. [Gff.]

Tearing by jerks in the right upper jaw.

Drawing pain in the right and left upper and lower jaw, with drawing in the head and confusion in it (aft. 2.1/2 h.). [Gff.]

Tearing pain in the depression behind the right ear. [Gff.]

125. Violent tearing by jerks in the left zygomatic process, in front of the left ear, in the evening in bed. [Gff.]

Single stitches, or tearing jerks in the right internal meatus auditorious. [Gff.]

Tearing in the interior of the right ear. [Gff.]

Earache in the left ear. [Gff.]

A kind of earache in the right ear, in the evening. [Gff.]

130. A kind of forcing outwards in both ears (aft. 17 d.).

Violent formicating itching in the interior of the right ear, which recurred after boring in with the finger. [Gff.]

Fine pinching in the left ear. [Cas.]

Ringing in the ears.

Ringing in the left ear, with whirling vertigo.

135. Roaring in the ears.

Great rushing noise before ears (aft. 36 h.).

Loud speaking is painful to the hearing and very disagreeable. [Ad.]

A weight upon the ears like two sand-bags lying at the entrance of the meatus auditorious. [Ad.]

A weight in and upon the ears; they feel stopped up to him, but without diminution of the hearing power. (aft. ½. h.). [Ad.]

140. Every evening his lef ear is hot and red.

Tearing burning pain on the lobe of the left ear. [Gff.]

Itching behind the ear.

Great swelling of the parotid gland between the cheek and ear, to the angle of the lower jaw.

Feeling of heaviness of the nose.

145. Epistaxis, at night, with ebullition in the blood (aft. 52 h.).

In the morning, in bed, very severe epistaxis, and immediately thereafter pain in the chest.

Severe epistaxis, that can scarcely be stopped (aft. 48 h.).

(Eruption on the corner of the ala nasi.).

Scabby nose-tip.

150. Swelling of the upper lip and cheek, with twitching pain.

Twitching in the upper lip.

Painful eruption on the upper lip; the red part of the lip is studded with pimples.

Drawing from the right corner of the mouth to the chin.

Spasmodic pain on the lower jaw (aft. 13 d.).

155. Painfulneess of the roots of the teeth above and below.

Drawing pain in the hollow tooth.

Drawing and tearing toothache in the upper and lower molars (aft. 4.1/2, 5, 16, 26 h.). [Gff.]

Drawing pain in one upper incisor. [Gff.]

Gentle drawing in the right molars, mingled with violent jerks. [Gff.]

160. Violent drawing jerk in one hollow molar. [Gff.]

Tickling, shooting drawing in the first molar on the left si(aft. 26 h.). [Gff.]

Squeezing pain in the right lower molars. [Gff.]

Pressive toothache in the left upper molars.

Smarting drawing pain in the upper and lower incisors – more in the gums. [Gff.]

165. Toothache in the front sound incisors. [Ad.]

Gnawing and drawing pain in the hollow tooth, with swelling of the gums.

The gums are painfully sensitive when chewing.

The first upper molar on the left side is often painful as of sore, with drawing pain in it. [Gff.]

The gums (by day) feel sore.

170. The gum at the hollow tooth is swollen (aft. 21 d.).

The gums are detached from the teeth and sensitive.

Recession of the gums from some of the lower incisors.

A pustule on the gums.

After sucking the gums bloody saliva (aft. 2 d.). [Cas.]

175. On drawing with the tongue the teeth and gums bleed profusely. [Gff.]

For several days, frequent bleeding of the teeth and gums. [Gff.]

The tongue is furred white.

The tongue is covered with brownish-yellow mucus. [Gff.]

The tip of the tongue is hot and dry. [Cas.]

180. On the left side of the root of the tongue cramp pain(aft. 3 h.). [Gff.]

He had a difficulty in speaking, just as if the tongue were difficult to move. [Ad.]

Fine tearing pain on the right side of the tongue. [Gff.]

Dryness in the mouth, without thirst.

In the morning on awaking very dry mouth.

185. At the back of the palate an aching pain. [Gff.]

Burning in the upper part of the fauces.

Frequent burning and smarting in the fauces and palate. [Gff.]

Aching pain behind the palate in the fauces.

Smarting sensation posteriorly in the fauces as at the commencement of a coryza, but more smarting. [Gff.]

190. Tearing pressure at the back of the fauces and on the left side of the root of the tongue. [Gff.]

In the throat and fauces a very violent scraping and formication only relieved for a short time by hawking. [Gff.]

Scraping in the throat.

(Feeling of coldness down in the throat.)

Painless impediment to swallowing; the saliva swallowed does not go down well and at once, but only gradually. [Gff.]

195. The food is not easily swallowed down; the throat feels as if constricted by a spasm, but without pains.

The throat feels swollen internally and as if contracted.

A pressive feeling in the upper part of the gullet, as if it were narrowed or contracted, even when not swallowing. [Gff.]

Sore throat; when eating the throat feels excoriated.

200. (Sore throat, uvula inflamed and swollen, and shooting in the throat).

A kind of fulness and pressure down the gullet as far as the stomach – almost like heart-burn.

Eructation (aft. 1.1/2 h.). [Cas.]

Frequent almost continual eructation.

Frequent, empty eructation, after short pinching in the abdomen (aft.3.1/2, 4.1/4 h.). [Gff.]

She has sweet eructations.

Bitter and scraping eructations.


Salt taste in the mouth all day (aft. 48 h.).

210. (Sour eructation, after taking milk.)

(Sensation as of constant heart- burn; acidity always rose up into the mouth).

In the forenoon, frequent sensation, as if something hot and acrid rose up in the gullet.

Bitterness in the mouth and eructations.

Bitter taste in the mouth, before and after eating.

215. Little appetite and no taste, as in catarrh.

Little appetite, with heat in the mouth and roughness and dryness on the tip of the tongue (aft. 42 h.). [Cas.]

(Anorexia and nausea, also when fasting, but worse after eating, with anxiety, dizziness, darkness before the eyes, and white tongue; towards evening he must lie down, without sleepiness) (aft. 6, 7 d.).

Absence of hunger; he could have remained without eating. [Gff.]

Little appetite; she is soon satiated; she feels pain in the scrobiculus cordis, and as if too empty in the stomach, for half an hour.

220. Anorexia and frequent eructation (with confusion of head).

Towards noon, diminished appetite and nausea(aft. 3 d.).

In the morning, an hour after waking, nausea, and as if qualmish in the stomach.

At night, nausea.

Frequent inclination to vomit, and yet he did not vomit.

225. Constant nausea, without appetite and without stool.

Repugnance to butter.

After eating a painful hiccup in the gullet.[Ad.]

After a moderate dinner, repeated hiccup. [Cas.]

(After a meal, strong palpitation of the heart.)

230. During and after a meal, pinching in the abdomen. [Gff.]

Every afternoon, after a meal, great heaviness in the feet, for eight days.

After eating but little, distension and fulness fo the abdomen and rumbling in the bowels. [Gff.]

After a moderate breakfast, immediately full and satiated (aft. 68 h.). [Cas.]

Samuel Hahnemann
Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843) was the founder of Homoeopathy. He is called the Father of Experimental Pharmacology because he was the first physician to prepare medicines in a specialized way; proving them on healthy human beings, to determine how the medicines acted to cure diseases.

Hahnemann's three major publications chart the development of homeopathy. In the Organon of Medicine, we see the fundamentals laid out. Materia Medica Pura records the exact symptoms of the remedy provings. In his book, The Chronic Diseases, Their Peculiar Nature and Their Homoeopathic Cure, he showed us how natural diseases become chronic in nature when suppressed by improper treatment.