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


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

(Tin beaten out to the finest leaf by gold beaters, under the name of false or plate metal, is the purest tin. For medicinal purposes a grain of this is triturated with a hundred grains of milk-sugar for an hour in a porcelain mortar, whilst frequently scraped up with a bone spatula; this produces the first hundred-fold dilution of this metallic powder, which is then treated in a similar manner up to the million-fold (I used to carry the dilution up to the billion-fold, but in the course of time found the million-fold adequate for all medicinal purposes.)

The ancients have recorded wonderful cures of the most serious diseases with tin, some of which I will refer to in the notes. But the moderns know (or think) nothing of all this – after careful testing or from well-founded conviction? I doubt this very much. (The trashiest idea or most frivolous proposal, if it only comes from England, Italy, of France, and especially if it be brought by the very latest post, is in Germany esteemed as something incomparable, and it is considered a point of honour to accept it blindly with effusion (until, after three or six months, the usual uselessness of the foreign recommendation is discovered, when there is again a hunt for some flesh novelty from foreign countries) – whilst honest fellow-countrymen and the truth loving men if former times remain unnoticed and unread.)

The moderns only know tin as a remedy for tape-worm, and use it only in the form of tin filings, of which they theoretically (for careful testing is too much trouble for them), of which, I repeat, they theoretically declare: “that it expels the tape-worm from the bowels solely in a mechanical manner, by means of its weight and sharp points,” without thinking that were this true iron, silver, or gold filings must be able to do the same.

Now, in order to effect this theoretically inferred scouring out of the tape-worm by the sharp points of the tin filings with greater certainty, they gave to the patient these tin filings, in doses, the larger the better; as much as half or a whole ounce or even more at a time, and this dose repeated several times.

This procedure, however, is founded on caprice and a foregone conclusion, for the original receipt which ALSTON first communicated to us from the domestic practice at the beginning of last century – for it was from this source that the employment of tin for tape-worm was derived – before then no doctor knew anything about it – is quite different.

“A woman of Leith, in Scotland,” says ALSTON (Mater. Medorrhinum, I, p. 150), “had a domestic receipt against tape-worm (fluke-worm, Toenia soluium), which a publican’s wife, Maria Martin, got from her, whereby she got rid of this worm.” ALSTON procured it from her daughter. It was as follows: – “Take an ounce and a half of tin (pewter-metal (Pewter-metal is not pure tin, which, as is well known, is very soft, but the hard, brittle, so-called English tin, which is composed of soft, pure tin, with a twentieth part of alloy, generally zinc (but sometimes also copper, bismuth, &c.), melted together. This may be not only easily filed, but even triturated to a powder in a mortar (see NICHOLSON, Chemistry, Lond., 1790, p. 355.)

Here there is no question of sharp-pointed coarse tin filings, but only of a fine powder ground in a mortar or on a grindstone. It is impossible that the fine powder of the original receipt, from which alone all the curative power of tin for tape-worm was learnt, could have been efficatious, if its efficacy depended on the mechanical points of tin filings.

Here we see how stupidity the theory of the medical school was wont to spoil the good that lay in the discoveries of domestic practice.

But more accurate observation and experience show that neither tin filings nor ALSTON’s syrup prepared with tin powder really kill any species of tape-worm. For who has ever seen the former or the latter by itself expel the tape-worm dead from the intestines? Always and in every case that aid of purgatives must be had recourse to, and even then the worm was seldom seen, and even if it were thereby expelled, the tin seemed only to have acted as a stupefying agent on the tape-worm. So little is tin capable of killing the worm, that if the purgative (as usually happens) fails to expel it wholly, after frequent repetitions of the administration of tin, the tape-worm goes on increasing in the bowels to a still greater degree; indeed, it usually excites more frequent fits of suffering (these being readily induced by some little ailment of another sort). Moreover, workers in tin not unfrequently suffer from tape-worm to a very great extent. Hence tin seems rather to cause a palliative suppression of the disagreeable movements of the worm, and this in the secondary action contributes more to the unjury than the benefit of the patient.

But if a palliative of this character be sometimes necessary, then, as sure experience has taught me, it is not necessary to give whole ounces of tin, as has hitherto been believed, but a very small portion of a grain of the above-described million-fold dilution of tin powder is more than sufficient for a dose.

On the other hand, the following few observations of the artificial morbid symptoms produced by tin on the healthy body teach us how to make a multitude of much more useful homoeopathic employments of its great healing-powers.

The duration of the action of tin is over three weeks in chronic diseases.

I must, however, warn every careful practitioner never to entrust the preparation of triturations of this and other similar metal powders to a hied workman if he would wish to be certain to have that which he means and ought to have. He must prepare them himself, with care, accuracy and patience, if he would be sure of the result.


The following old-school authorities are cited for pathogenetic and therapeutic observations:

ABRAHAM. MEYER, Diss. Cauteloe de Anthelminth., Gottingen, 1782. (Commerc, lit, Nor., Ann. 1734.

ETTMULLER, Colleg. Consult.

FOTHERGILL, Medorrhinum Observ. and Inquir., London, 1784, vi.

GEISCHLAEGER, in Hufel, Jour., x, iii.

HOFFMANN. FR., opera. Tom. ii.

MONRO DON., Arzneimittel., i.

MURALTUS, in Misc. Nat. Cur., Dec. ii, Ann. i.

QUINCY, New Dispensat.

STAHL, G., E., Mat. Medorrhinum

THIERRY, Medorrhinum Experiment.

VOGEL, R. A., Praelect. De Cogn. Et Cur. Morb.

The first edition has 552 symptoms, this second edition 660; in the Chr. Kr there are only 648].


Stupefying vertigo, only when walking in the open air; he staggered hither and thither in walking, so that he feared he must fall (aft. 6 h.). [Lr.]

Giddy when seated as though he would fall from his chair (aft. 12 h.). [Gn.]

Sudden attack of vertigo, on sitting down (aft. 12 h.). [Ws.]

Transient feeling of vertigo, just as if he were sitting quite apart and the objects and persons about him were at a great distance from him (aft. 24 h.). [Ws.]

5. Vertigo as if the brain turned round (aft. 1 h.). [Hrr.]

Transient, but frequently recurring vertigo: he feels as if the brain turned round; he loses his thinking power, cannot read any more, and sits there as if bereft of consciousness. [Hrr.]

Dizziness of the whole head (aft. 2 h.). [Hrr.]

Great heaviness and confusion of the head – worse in the evening.

Confusion and stupidity of the head, as if about to have catarrh – also sneezing; but it does not come to catarrh.

10. Heaviness in the head when at rest and when moving, in the evening, for two hours (aft. 9 h.).

Usually every morning headache, nausea, anorexia, and crossness.

A humming in the head; external noises vibrated in the head.

As if sleepy and exhausted in the head.

Painless pressure from within outwards in the left side of the occiput (aft. 5 d.). [Hnl.]

15. In the left half of the brain a feeling of emptiness, with pressive heavy sensation, impossible to relieve (aft. 25 h.). [Htn.]

Pressive pain out at the right side of the head. [Gn.]

Pressive pain from within outwards in the right temple, almost ext(aft. 3 h.). [Gn.]

Pressure in the left temple, beginning weak then increasing and again declining, as if it would be pressed in. [Gss. (Five grains of pure tin-lea were intimately triturated with 100 grains of milk-sugar, and this two provers took for four successive days, in the morning fasting, increasing the dose every day; the man took in all three grains, the woman only two.) ]

Pressive pain, extending from the middle of the forehead to the centre of the brain (aft. 11 h.). [Gn.]

20. A kind of pressure in the temple, crown, and especially forehead, which is alleviated by the pressure of the hand. [Gss.]

Aching pain in the right temple when lying on it, which goes off on rising up (aft. 5 d.). [Gn.]

Pressure in the forehead, undiminished by stooping forward, relieved by external pressure, aggravated by bending backward. [Gss.]

Sudden sharp pressure on the crown, with the feeling as if the hairs were moved at the same time. [Gss.]

Obtuse pressure outwards, and especially upwards, in the middle of the forehead, in the region of the frontal suture inwardly (aft. 3 h.). [Hrr.]

25. A pain pressing outwards at the forehead with sleepiness, unaltered by stooping forward or bending backward, worse when she ceases to press on it with the hand. [Gss.]

A pain pressing outwards at the frontal protuberances. [Gss.]

Pressive stupefying headache close above the eyebrows as if the brain there were pressed, when at rest and when moving (aft. 3.1/2 h.). [Lr.]

Dizzy pressive feeling distributed through the whole head. [Hrr.]

Aching pain in the forehead.

30. Pressive stupefying pain, especially in the forehead, more externally than internally, when moving and when at rest (aft. 4 h.). [Lr.]

Compression of the occiput, under the crown. [Fz.]

Painful pressing of the brain in the crown and occiput against the skull, in the evening before going to sleep, and lasting after lying down. [Hnl.]

Pain like pressing-in of the temples all day.

Headache, as if the temples were pressed in.

35. Compressive feeling at the temples and occiput.

Painful feeling in the head as if the whole brain were stretched out and drawn asunder.

Constrictive pressing pain suddenly attacks the whole upper half of the head, beginning slightly, slowly increasing, and then gradually declining. [Gss.]

Spasmodic pain on the head as if the head were outwardly compressed by a band.

Contractive pain in the right side of the occiput (aft. 53 h.). [Gn.]

40. His head often feels as if it were screwed in, with intermittent slow jerks or drawing pressure here and there. [Gss.]

Violent painful jerk above the forehead through the anterior half of the brain, leaving behind it an obtuse pressure until the jerk returns (aft. 6 h.). [Htn.]

Sudden pressive jerk in the left side of the forehead and left temple, so that if smashed in the forehead.

Stupefying boring pressive pain on the surface of the left half of the brain, spreading from the centre of the parietal bone to the left frontal protuberance (aft. 8 h.). [Htn.]

45. Boring pain in the left temple all day (aft. 4 d.).

Aching boring pain in the right temple, which is removed by external pressure (aft. 3 h.). [Htn.]

In the occipital bone painful heaviness with feeling of boring (aft. 11 h.). [Htn.]

Transient pain draws through the left frontal protuberance with slight pressure. (Drawing pressure, or pressive drawing seems to be a chief pain with tin.)[Gss.]

A pressive drawing through the forehead and crown. [Gss.]

50. Pressive tearing through the right side of the head (aft. 2 h.). [Ws.]

Pressive tearing in the right half of the forehead recurring by first, worse when stooping (aft. 12 h.). [Htn.]

Pressive tearing pain in the left side of the occipital bone (aft. 5 h.). [Htn.]

Drawing pressure from the right parietal bone towards the right orbit. [Gss.]

Drawing pressure on the upper border of the left orbit. [Gss.]

55. In the temple and half of the forehead of the same side, a confusing pressive drawing. [Gss.]

Aching tearing pain in the forehead. [Hrr.]

Tearing pressure in the right half of the head (aft. 2.1/2 h.). [Hrr.]

Aching tearing pain in the left side of the crown, inwardly (aft. 1.1/2 h.). [Hrr.]

Aching tearing pain in the left side of the occiput. [Hrr.]

60. Persistent aching tearing of the head with dizziness and vertigo. [Hrr.]

Tearing pain in the left parietal bone and forehead. [Hrr.]

Jerk-like drawing tearing above the left eye-brow, outwardly (aft. 1 h.). [Lr.]

On the left frontal protuberance a long, blunt stitch. [Gss.]

On the right side of the top of the head some quick yet blunt stitches. [Gss.]

65. Fine pricking on the forehead above the region betwixt the eyebrows. [Fz.]

Burning shooting on the crown. [Fz.]

Stitch-like headache, especially on the left side of the forehead, with fluent coryza. [Lr.]

Shooting in the forehead, even when at rest, for several days – on stooping feeling as if all would come out at the forehead.

Along with chilliness of the body, heat in the head, pulse-like shooting in the temple and weakness of the head, so that the reason was almost gone; at the same time slumber and unconsciousness.

70. Beating pain in the temples.

Heat inwardly in the forehead, whilst she was also hot to the external feeling.

Headache: burning in the half of the sinciput, like fire, so also in the nose and eyes – these parts were also hot outwardly – just the same when moving as when at rest; he must lie down; at the same time nausea and retching as though he would vomit (for a whole day from morning till evening.)

Festering pain on the head.

Burning tensive pain on hairy scalp in front, just above the right side of the forehead (aft. 7 h.). [Gn.]

75. On shaking the head the brain seems to him to be loose and to strike painfully against the walls of the skull. [Gss.]

A pimple on the left eyebrow, with pain of an aching character when touched, but burning when let alone.

Suddenly some jerks on the upper border of the right orbit and on other parts with painful stupefaction of the head. [Gss.]

On the outer side of the left upper orbital border, painful obtuse blows in quick succession. [Gss.]

Dull, dim, sunken eyes (aft. 2 d.). [Hrr.]

80. Her eyes are very dim.

Contraction of the pupils (aft. ½, ¾ h.). [Lr.]

Dilatation of the pupils (aft. 26 h.). [Lr.]

Burning in the eyes.

Smarting in the eyes, as after rubbing with a woolen cloth. [Fz.]

85. Pain in the eyes as if they had been rubbed with a woolen cloth, alleviated by moving the eyelids (aft. 1 h.).

Itching sensation in the whole left eyeball; it did not quite go off by rubbing (aft. 30 h.). [Gn.]

The eyes project and are painful as though she had been crying.

Pressure in the eyes.

Aching in the left eye as from a stye on the lids. [Fz.]

90. Tensive stitch in the left eyeball, most violent when it is moved (aft. 58 h.). [Gn.]

Pressure in the left inner canthus as from a stye, with weeping of the eye (aft. 5 h.). [Hrr.]

Aching pain in the right inner canthus. [Hrr.]

Burning shooting pain towards the outer canthus of the right eye (aft. 6 h.). [Gn.]

Pricking burning pain in the left canthus (aft. 2 h.). [Gn.]

95. Itching in the inner canthus.

In the left inner canthus an abscess, like a lachrymal fistula.

The eyelids contract, with redness of the white of the eye and burning sensation (aft. 5 d.).

Aching in both upper eyelids (aft. 4 h.). [Gn.]

Sensation behind the right eyelid as if a hard body were betwixt it and the eyeball (aft. 4.1/2 h.). [Gn.]

100. Violent, small, burning pricks in the right upper and lower lids, rather towards the outer canthus (aft. 9 h.). [Htn.]

Burning pain in the left lower eyelid (aft. 4 d.). [Gn.]

The eyes are gummed up every night and very weak by day.

Quivering at the right inner canthus (aft. 4 d.). [Hnl.]

Quivering of the left eye, for a week.

105. Twitching of the eyes.

Ringing in the left ear (aft. ¼, 9.1/2 h.). [Lr.]

Rushing in the ear as from blood streaming through it. [Fz.]

On blowing the nose a screeching in the ear.

In the evening, creaking before and in the left ear, as from a door. [Fz.]

110. Feeling as if the left ear were stopped up, with hardness of hearing, which is diminished after blowing the nose, in the morning after rising from bed, for four days. [Hnl.]

Drawing in the external ear, like painful earache. [Gss.]

Repeated drawing in the left ear, like earache. [Gss.]

Tearing pain in the right inner meatus auditorious, as in earache (aft. 6 h.). [Hrr.]

Drawing in the whole right inner and outer ear more painful when moving the lower-jaw (aft. 3 h.). [Gn.]

115. Cramp-like pain in the whole right ear for eight hours (aft. 6 h.). [Gn.]

Pinching tearing through the cartilage of the left ear, at the lobe of the ear, together with sensation if a cool wind sometimes blew upon it (aft. 4 h.). [Ws.]

Drawing stitch on the top of the left auricle (aft. 10 h.). [Gn.]

(Itching in the left ear.)

The ring-hole in the lobe of the ear becomes ulcerated.

120. Boring pain in the right ear, with cold feet.

Aching externally on the bone behind the ear.

Feeling of stoppage and weight in the upper part of the nasal cavity. [Hrr.]

Immediately on awaking in the morning violent epistaxis.

Epistaxis in the morning immediately after rising from bed (aft. 22 h.). [Hnl.]

125. Flying, quickly coming and quickly going, heat in the face, perceptible inwardly and outwardly. [Gss.]

Pale, sunken countenance (aft. 2 d.). [Hrr.]

Long, pale face, sickly appearance (aft. 2 d.). [Hrr.]

Drawing aching attacks on the right side of the facial bones, especially the zygomatic process and orbit, in a jerky manner. [Gss.]

Aching gnawing on the left side of the face, especially on the zygomatic process (aft. 3 d.). [Ws.]

130. A sense-stupefying sensation in the face, especially on the forehead (aft. ½ h.). [Lr.]

Cramp-like pressure in the facial muscles, on the left malar bone under the eye (aft. 6 h.). [Ws.]

Contractive pain in the facial bones of the right side, including the teeth; it feels as if the right side of the face were drawn shorter. [Gss.]

Burning pain in the muscles of the face under the right eye (aft. 6 h.). [Gn.]

Tearing from the zygoma downwards into the lower jaw near the angle of the mouth. [Gss.]

135. Drawing pressure on the right zygoma. [Gss.]

In the evening burning cramp-pain in the left cheek, and soon afterwards swelling of the cheeks, which, only when he draws the face away, has cutting aching pain, as if splinters of glass were between the cheek and teeth. [Fz.]

Burning sensation in the right cheek (aft. 10 h.). [Gn.]

Contraction and aching under the right cheek internally. [Fz.]

Painful swelling of the left cheek with a gum boil – the pains make her sleepless.

140. In the face, itching papules, which have sore pain when touched or washed.

Cramp and spasm in the jaws.

Pain of the upper jaw; it is swollen, the cheeks are red and there is shooting in them.

In the lower lip a shooting tearing pain on a small spot.

On the angle of the right lower jaw a red boiled with drawing pain, aggravated by touching, for eight days.

145. Broad cutting stitches anteriorly on the chin (aft. 10 h.). [Ws.]

Painful swelling of the submaxillary glands (aft. 8 h.).

On the fore part of the neck, a red, somewhat elevated spot with a white papule in the centre, not painful even when touched. [Ws.]

The teeth feel too long.

Looseness of the teeth.

150. Speaking is disagreeable for him.

Speaking is difficult for him, because he wants the power to do it. [Gss.]

Flow of saliva into the mouth. [Fz.]

Viscid mucus in the mouth.

Tongue covered with yellowish fur (aft. 5 d.). [Gn.]

155. When swallowing a cutting as with knives in the oesophagus. [Fz.]

Shooting in the upper part of the fauces causing dryness, when not swallowing. [Fz.]

Dry sensation and shooting in the throat at the right tonsil, which makes him cough, and is slightly allayed as well by coughing as by swallowing. [Fz.]

Under the pit of the throat inwardly a scratchy scrapy feeling. [Gss.]

In the evening scratchy in the throat.

160. In the morning scrapy in the throat.

Much mucus in the throat.

In the evening irritation in the throat making him hawk up much mucus, followed by pain of excoriation in the throat.

Painful feeling in the throat, as if the throat swelled with sore pain, neither increased nor diminished by swallowing; after hawking up much mucus, the voice becomes higher than usual in pitch when singing.

In the throat a feeling of swelling and drawing tensive pains in it, with dry feeling.

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.