CORRESPONDENCE BETWEEN HAHNEMANN AND PROFESSOR DZONDI.
(According to a publication by Prof. Dzondi, in the “Allgem. Anz. der Deutschen,” No. 19, January 20th, 1817).
Very esteemed Professor, How can you think of inviting me to an experiment of this nature? I do not need to be convinced of this, but you do. Make the experiment on yourself or on somebody else with leisure and calmness, but without forming an opinion beforehand and even without witnesses, if you wish to convince yourself which of the two is true? If you had been of a different opinion, as your letter shows, and for which I thank you (when you said that cold water was the best, the only remedy for burns) what does it matter if you revoke your opinion after thinking better of it through an experiment of simple comparison on two members of the same body at the same time, what would it matter in such a case! Do not think that to alter your opinion and principle will bring dishonour to you, no, it will bring honour, the greatest honour! For a man to sacrifice his opinion to the truth shows an heroic conquest over self, and true and rare greatness of mind!
I am, with great esteem, Your obedient servant, DR. SAM. HAHNEMANN.
Leipsic, 13th July, 1816.
Prof. D. Dzondi became abusive after this and replied: Esteemed Doctor, You try to retreat but in vain. How can you-after your public challenge-refuse the suggestion which I made to you, and what is more, not want to convince the world of the accuracy of your statement, and win besides 500 thaler, considering that you are so certain of your case! In order that you may see how certain I am of mine, and also to show you that I am not actuated by the love of gain I will put 500 thaler against your 50 thaler; and these 50 thaler shall go to the Blind and Eye patients, and you-if you are afraid of your skin-I will let you off the test with the red-hot iron.
If you refuse this offer also, you acknowledge that you have a bad conscience, and that your statement will not stand the test of fire. For as you are stating the opposite from what I have stated and have publicly asserted that cold water is harmful in burns; but I say: that in severe burns it is the only efficient remedy, and that I am ready to give proof of this in your presence and that of other witnesses-you must either accept this offer which complies with your request, or otherwise publicly own that you have purposely deceived the public by an untrue statement, and with that earn the name which you shall learn, but which I shall only openly utter when you will have refused to accept my offer.
Your, PROF. DZONDI.
Halle, 16th July, 1816.
Vol. 2-9 SUPPLEMENT 63
HAHNEMANN’S DEFENCE AGAINST THE ACCUSATION OF THE APOTHECARIES OF LEIPSIC ON HIS PREPARATION AND DISPENSING OF MEDICINES.
We take the following publication from the words of Dr. Franz Hartmann, given in the “Alliumhom.Ztg.” (Vol.26), May 13th, 1844, which in many points differs considerably from the text published in “the Lesser Writings of Samuel Hahnemann.” Dr. Franz Hartmann, who was a pupil of Hahnemann and a personal friend of Stapf, introduces the reproduction of this writing with the following remark: “I will reproduce literally the document, which chance put into my hands.” Dr. Fr. Hartmann was familiar with the wording of the document as reproduced in Stapf’s edition, because he was present when the work was presented to Hahnemann on his jubilee. The conclusion is easily reached, that Stapf used for his publication the abstract of the reply to the accusation which Hahnemann had handed over to him, while Hartmann somehow or other found in his possession fifteen years later the actual document with the final wording, and has intentionally published it in this form. After this Dr. Ameke’s quotations in Vol.III of the “Zeitschrift des Berliner Vereins homoeopathischer `Arzte,'” of 1884, as well as the special publication concerning the valuable
work on Samuel Hahnemann have to be corrected, as here (page 150) when enumerating Hahnemann’s works it says: “On the preparation and dispensing of medicines by Homoeopathic Physicians; Stapf, Lesser Writings of Hahnemann, Vol. II, page 192-204; otherwise not printed.”
MOST HUMBLE REPRESENTATION.
Non debet cui plus licet, quod minus est non licere. Ulpian lib. 27 ad Sabinum.
(What is less, may well be allowed to him, to whom more is allowed).
REMONSTRANCE TO THE APOTHECARIES OF LEIPSIC.
That by dispensing my own medicine, I encroached on their privileges is not valid for the following reasons.
My method of treatment has nothing in common with the ordinary medical science, on the contrary it is exactly its opposite. It is a Novum quid, to which the existing measurement of medical prescribing can in no way apply.
The old method of treatment requires compound medicines, each consisting of several ingredients of considerable weight. The compounding of these prescriptions, as a rule consisting of several medicines, requires skilful, often laborious preparation with expenditure of time; the practitioner cannot give either to it, as his time is occupied with visiting patients, and as a rule does not possess the skill to mix several frequently heterogeneous medicines, and must therefore have a scientific helper-the apothecary-at hand, who will prepare these laborious and time-wasting medicinal mixtures, which a physician sometimes prescribes, more than once a day. He takes over the preparation and dispensing of medicines instead of the physician. Because where medical laws speak of dispensing, always and without exception is understood by it: exdiversis pensis componere (dispensare), and nothing else can be implied by it, as all existing medical prescriptions are compounded, that is, prescriptions put together from several ingredients; as even to this day in all Universities, in the Medical Colleges, as well as in the Clinical Hospitals, and in the Dispensaries, all treatment of disease is only taught by making out a prescription, that is, giving the apothecary a list of the medicines he is to combine into one preparation. Even young physician who presents himself for examination must before promotion have studied and acquired the art of writing a prescription contain several medicines for the patient, as in the present medical science more than medicine, and several medicines together have to be written in a certain oral and so fashioned as to be exclusively left to the apothecary and the art of pharmacy for combination and union.
This right of skilfully preparing for the physicians, their compound medicinal remedies, that is, of dispensing, has been by the laws of medicine explicitly reserved for the apothecaries, so that no one should spoil the prescription through ignorance, or by the use of unsuitable drugs, while the physician who is busy with his patients has not always the skill or the time to do it himself.
All the Royal mandates on medical matters point out, that to the privileged pharmaceutical chemist, only, belongs the dispensing of compound and complex medicinal formulas. This is the right of the pharmaceutical chemists, but THE ONLY RIGHT, WHICH IS EXCLUSIVELY RESERVED FOR THEM by Royal decree. The new science of treatment, Homoeopathy, so entirely opposed to the ordinary existing medical science, has no prescriptions to hand over to the apothecaries, and no compound remedies, but for each single case of disease only one single simple remedy.
The word dispensing does not apply, and the State Laws which reserve to apothecaries the exclusive right of dispensing (prepare compound medicinal substances in a skilful manner) cannot in any form apply to the homoeopathic science of treatment.
As every science in the course of centuries must admit of improvements, which ought to be welcomed by every civilized state, so also the science of healing must go on to greater perfection.
If through the wisdom of Providence there arises a science capable of curing disease without compound remedies (more easily and with greater certainty and permanence) and there are physicians who know how to treat disease with one simple efficacious remedy, this privilege of dispensing compound remedies should not hinder them; it should not, in its beneficial progress, prevent this new science of healing from developing, and it should not hinder the physician, to whom all the powers of Nature ought to be available, from helping suffering humanity, from curing human beings by any method that has proved most suitable for this purpose, such as, personal administration of mesmerism, galvanic current, electricity, or the application of the magnet, and in the same way through the personal dispensing of any medicinal substance in which he could not be restricted by any law of medicine, nor has been restricted by it.
Where do we find one single clear syllable in all the Royal Decrees which forbids the medical profession to give simple remedies to their patients?
And as long as no such prohibition is present in the Medical Laws, and further, there is no expression of exclusive apothecaries’ privileges in the dispensing of simple remedies, and even the ignorant sellers of roots, and the old women vendors of herbs have permission to sell in the weekly market to those who seek help, simple medicinal roots and herbs for money, it will remain permissible for the scientific physician, with a knowledge of Nature and the powers of its products, and familiar with human ills, to dispense to his patients simple remedies for their help without selling them, when he considers these most serviceable in their illness.