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


(From vol. v, 2nd edit. 1826.)

(A drachm of the seeds of Delphinium staphisagria is pulverised, along with an equal quantity of chalk (for the purpose of absorbing the oil), and macerated, without heat and daily succession, for a week in 600 drops of alcohol, in order to form the tincture.)

The ancient may have made a very rude employment of this seed in order to excite vomiting or salivation, as we may see in DIOSCORIDES, who, however, also talks about its administration for toothache in general, the origin of which application is evidently domestic practice.

JOH. HEINR. SCHULZE (Theses de Materia Medica, editae a C.G. STRUMPFF, Hal., 1746, p. 435) when suffering from toothache took some of it in his mouth, but it gave him such a violent exacerbation that he thought he should go mad. What enormous power must not this drug possess!

As an exterminator of head vermin this seed was called by the Greeks ????okokov, and as such it still enters into the composition of an officinal ointment (unguentum pediculorum).

Now, as out new and only true healing art shows by experience that every drug is medicinal in proportion to the energy of its action on the health, and that is only overcomes that natural disease by virtue of its pathogenetic power provided it is analogous to the latter; it follows that a medicine can subdue the most serious diseases the most injuriously it acts on health human beings and that we have only to ascertain exactly its peculiar injurious effects in order to know to what curative purposes to may be applied in the art of restoring human health. Its power, be it ever so energetic, does not by any means call for its rejection; nay, it makes it all the more valuable; for, on the one hand, its power of altering the human health only reveals to us all the more distinctly and clearly the peculiar morbid states which it can produce on healthy human beings, so that we may all the more surely and indubitably discover the cases of disease in which it is to be employed in similarity (homoeopathically) and therefore curatively; whilst, on the other hand, its energy, be that ever so great, may be easily moderated by appropriate dilution and reduction of dose, so that it shall become only useful and not hurtful if it is found to correspond in the greatest possible similarity to the symptoms of the disease we wish to cure. It is just to the most powerful medicines in the smallest doses that we may look for the greatest curative virtue in the most serious diseases of peculiar character for which this and no other medicine is suitable.

For these unexceptionable reasons I anticipated a great treasure of curative action in the most peculiar diseases from staphisagria; and these reasons of which are recorded in the following symptoms. Thus, curative virtues have been elicited from this medicinal substances which are of infinitely greater value than its power to kill lice (the only medicinal property the ordinary quackish medical art knew it to possess) – curative virtues which the homoeopathic practitioner may make use of with marvellous effect in rare morbid states, for which there is no other remedy but this.

Ten drops of tincture are first intimately mixed by succession with two strokes of the arm with ninety drops of alcohol in order to obtain the first dilution (1/100); of this one drop mixed in the same way with another 100 drops of alcohol gives the 1/10000th dilution; and in this manner through thirty diluting phials in all, the dilution is brought so far that the last phial, which is that destined for medicinal use, contains a decillion-fold dilution (to be marked1/x), of which the smallest portion of a drop (a sugar globule the size is a poppy seed moistened with it) is to be employed as a dose.

I have seen the action of a larger dose more than three weeks.

Camphor subdues the excessive action of this medicine, and is a principal antidote of staphisagria.


No old-school authorities are cited.

The 1st edit has 606 symptoms, this 2nd edit,. 721.]


In the room vertigo, like stupefaction, not on the open air.

On stooping and on turning the head quickly vertigo; every thing whirled round on half a circle (only once).

Vertigo: when walking he ran up against the door.

Vertigo when lying in bed in the evening as if all turned round with him.

5. Whirling vertigo, especially when sitting, diminished by walking about (aft. 1 h.). [Ctz.]

Giddy (aft. 8.1/2 h.). [Gn.]

When standing and speaking confusion of the head, as if vertigo would come on, lasting a long time (aft. 14 h.). [Hnl.]

Whirling in the forehead and dulness in the head (aft. 5 h.). [Stf.]

Confusion of the head, only in front on the centre of the forehead on a small spot the size of a finger-tip, like stupidity – in the street he did not know whether he was walking to the right or left: he had to take great care.

10. Confusion of the head only in fits; sometimes his head was quite free and clear.

The head is confused, as if stupid and heavy (aft. ½ h.). [Hnl.]

The head is always confused and the spirits depressed. [Kr.]

Obtuseness of the mind, which kept him from work of all sorts.

Dazed in the head as in catarrh. [Stf.]

15. When he wishes to seize on an idea it escapes him. Vanishing of the thoughts; when he speaks or reflects on any subject and some one interrupts him, or suggests to him another thought, he immediately forgets the first thought and cannot recall it. [Gss.]

Vanishing of the thoughts (memory disturbed by fancies); when he reflects on anything so many things confusedly mixed together occur to him that he cannot get rid of them and quite forgets what he wished to think about. [Gss.]

Vanishing of the thoughts (memory disturbed by fancies); when he reflects on anything so many things confusedly mixed together occur to him that he cannot get rid of them and quite forgets what he wished to think about. [Gss.]

Weakness of memory: when he has read something after a few minutes he remembers it only dimly, and when he thought about anything for himself it soon after escaped him, and after long reflection he could hardly recall it. [Hrr.]

Pain in the whole head like tingling (aft. 5 h.). [Stf.]

20. Tingling and shooting in the whole head, worse when stooping forwards and walking, in the evening, for many hours (aft. 36 h.). [Stf.]

In the morning quite dazed in the head with contractive pressure in the crown (aft. 4 d.). [Fz.]

Headache in the crown like contraction from all sides and pressure. [Fz.]

Headache, alternately stupfying and boring.

Aching stupefying pain in the head, especially in the forehead, more severe when moving the head and when standing. [Lr.]

25. A heavy weight seems to lie on the cribriform plate of the ethmoid bone, above the root of the nose, like a kneaded-together lump. [Fz.]

Headache when moving as if all the brain would fail out; also when at rest as if the brain were pressed together, were separated from the skull and lay loosely in it.

On stooping forwards pain in the head as if everything would come out at the forehead (aft. 5 h.). [Stf.]

Headache as if the brain were compressed (chiefly in the forehead), with attacks of roaring in the ears, which goes off much sooner than the headache.[Gss.]

He feels as if the occiput were compressed inwardly and outwardly.

30. A pressing of the brain, especially in the occiput, against the skull bones, and aching in it, as if too much blood had collected there, in the evening before going to bed, which continues after lying down (aft. 39 h.). [Hnl.]

A forcing-out and asunder-pressing pain in the left half of the forehead (aft. ½ h.). [Htn.]

Aching asunder-pressing heavy pain in the occiput, when walking in the open air (aft. ½ h.). [Htn.]

Heavy pressure over the right orbit, in the open air (aft. ½ h.). [Htn.]

Heaviness in the head (aft. 72 h.). [Gn.]

35. Heaviness of the head relieved by supporting it on the hand (aft. 1 h.). [Gn.]

When he shook his head he felt on a small spot the middle of the forehead as if there were something heavy there, like a leaden bullet in the brain, which could not be detached.

Hard pressure in the head in the region of the right temporal bone and vertex.[Hrr.]

Hard pressure on the right side of the forehead. [Hrr.]

Pressure above the right eye and drawing upwards. [Fz.]

40. Pressure above the right eye behind the superciliary ridge, as from something hard. [Fz.]

Pressive pain in the left temple outwardly and inwardly, as if the finger were strongly pressed on it. (aft. 1.1/2 h.). [Hrr.]

Occasional drawing pressure on the forehead. [Hnl.]

In the morning immediately after waking, severe headache, as if the brain were torn, which went off afterwards with frequent spasmodic yawning.

Tearing in the forehead, in the evening when sitting; on stooping there was shooting in it and it was relieved by walking.

45. Violent tearing pressure through the left half of the brain, especially severe in the forehead, gradually increasing and gradually going off (aft. 54 h.). [Htn.]

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.