CHARACTER SKETCH; HER CHILDREN
HAHNEMANN’S FIFTIETH DOCTOR’S JUBILEE.
CELEBRATED AT CoTHEN ON AUGUST 10TH,1829.
We take the following description from Dr. Stapf’s account in his “Archiv” (8th Vol., 2nd part, 1829):
Already on the eve of the Festival, friends hurriedly arrived from all parts to joint in the festivities; from Berlin, Brunswick, Dresden, Eisenach Leipsic, Merseburg, Naumberg, and many other places; even from Basle, in Switzerland, which was several hundred miles away, arrived one of the knees and truest friends of homoeopathy, Dr. Siegrist. It was a very happy fathering of many men, all aiming at one goal. Many, who had previously only known and esteemed each other by some, become personally acquainted; older friends met again, and many a hearty nd fruitful relationships was begun or considered. On the 10th August at 6 o, clock in the morning, some music was played in honour of the old man there was a table aimed after the manner of an alter decorated with flowers and oak leaves, and on which stood a life-like bust of Hahnemann, which had been executed for the Association. Near-by on a side table, was a magnificent and exquisitely finished alter oil- painting of Hahnemann, in a gold lithographs reproduced from it. After the numerous assembly, in which the family of he recipient of this homage jointed, had grouped themselves, the old man was led in by Dr. Stapf. Then Baron von Gersdorff, in short address gave him the greetings and congratulations for the day, in. the name of all present, and placed a wreath of fresh laurel leaves on the bust. After this, Dr. Rummel handed over the Diploma of Congratulations which the Medical Faculty had sent from Erlangen. Stapf gave a edition de luxe of Hahnemann Lesser Writings, collected and edited by himself, and Dr. Albrecht (Doctor of Laws) of Dresden, the Legal defender of homoeopathy, gave a valuable poem.
Deeply touched by this demonstration of friendship, in this festive hour, the venerable man spoke words of import filled with heartfelt joy and gratitude, and then received the personal congratulations of those who were present.
The honored scholar received in addition, from far and near, many numerous and pleasing tributes of recognition and cordiality. We remember first of all the Jubilee gift, with which the Duke and Duchess of Anhalt-Cothen surprised Hahnemann, accompanied by a gracious letter in their own handwriting; this was a golden snuff-box, with initials in diamonds (Hahnemann priced the value of the box in his will at 8o to 100 thaler-R. H.) and an antique drinking cup;’ there was also a diploma of honorary membership from the society of Natural Philosophy of Osterland at Altenburg, as well as a large number of letters from friends expressing congratulations and good wishes.
After these festive greetings, the assembled company met in. the garden, at the invitation of the venerable host, and spent a few happy hours with him in leaned conversation for many never to be forgotten. At one o, clock all re-assembled in a room of the hotel.., in which he banquet was tone held, to discuss the way in which the existing sum of 950 thalers could be most appropriately used for the promotion of homoeopathy; this sum had increased in the last few days through unexpected contributions, to 1,200 thalers.
After much discussion it was decided to leave the money in hand in the care of Hofrat Dr. Muhlenbein and Dr. Rummel, to be invested at interest, so that I might increase, and also that increase should be made by the sale of the lithographs on hand of Hahnemann portrait, and of the programs of the festivities, and continued collecting, and only when the sum had so considerably increased that something big could be undertaken, was a more explicit definition of its use to be made; yet the erecting of a homoeopathic clinic was the highest goal to be attained the locality of which was to be discussed later.
All those who were present undertook to supply further contributions for this highly beneficent object, and send then to the administrators of the capital sum, who in their turn were to publish from time to time, the names of the contributors in the Archiv of the homoeopathic Art of Healing, or have them mentioned in the index of names, which was published at the end, and that an official statement of accounts was to be rendered. the upon followed the foundation of a society of Homoeopathic Physicians he members of which were to consist of true homoeopaths. this society was to meet once a year on the 10th of August, in a locality chosen by themselves.
At the end of this meeting those present assembled for the banquet, where they were jointed by several influential strangers, who were staying at the time at Cothen to regain health through Hahnemann’s treatment under his personal supervision. He, for whom the banquet was held, had, had declined to be present for very valid reasons; therefore the place of honour remained vacant, as he was irreplaceable.
Joy and cheerfulness animated the meal and many toasts were proposed.
At the invitation of Hahnemann, all those present returned to his house at six o’clock, and spent the evening hours with him, in friendly and learned conversation. they all partook of a happy meal, and it was late when they departs, with hearty wishes for the welfare of a life so dear to them all;f or in the second part of th century of his indefatigable activity, humanity and science would have to thank him for much that was great and beneficial.
Thus ended the celebration of the Festal Day, which has been secretly arranged beforehand by faithful love and veneration..
THE PROGRAMME OF THE FESTIVAL.
Written in excellent Latin and consisting of thirty-four pages, had been printed by Stapf, and contained the following statements:
With Hahnemann begins a new epoch in medicine. He has not only criticised the old and new systems but has discovered something quite new, homoeopathy, which differing from all previous systems, although surmised by a few, had not hitherto been logically evolved by any.
No other science of treatment conforms more closely to the laws of mature, none cures diseases so well, but has discovered something quite new, homeopathy, which differing from all previous systems, although surmised by a few, had not hitherto been logically evolved by any.
No other science of treatment confirms more closely to the laws of nature,. none cures diseases so well, but one diverges to much from the ordinary path was homoeopathy.
It is therefore not surprising that it has so many friends and enemies. All previous systems based only on the opinions of their day, have vanished;the laws of nature are eternal. All previous systems owe their origin to speculations; but homoeopathy alone is based on the law of nature, and therefore it will continue to grow and come to light.
After a detailed account of Hahnemann’s life, the author asks the question. What is this exceptional something that Hahnemann has given to Medical science by his discovery?
Hahnemann doubted, very early in his career, the accuracy of the generally accept teaching of medical treatment, and recognized the sad condition of medicinal science, he could not area to use a medical art, the, the deficiencies and dangers of which he had learned to understand;he gave up medical practice, a s he preferred honorable poverty to a had conscience. He struggled for many years to support his family by translations derived from his wealth of knowledge in chemistry and foreign languages. Yet he yearned, again and again, for mistakes, which led away even the best physicians from the right path.
Thus he recognized the general error, which held most medical men captive; they exercised their profession unsupported by observations and experience, and led by useless suppositions and opinions, they were trying in vain to grasp the inner cause of disease, which all always remain hidden from the mind.
He gradually established the conviction, that other means would have to be found to help the art of healing, and came to the conclusion, that only real experience could be trusted, and that only observations of the effects of medicines carried out on the healthy body would attain the aim.
Through the translation of Cullen’s Materia Medica in 1790, Hahnemann was induced to try the effect of China bark on himself. The fundamental thought of homoeopathy was discovered in this way. He did not rest content with his isolated fact, but added further proving with remedies, and discovered in that way the true law of healing which corresponds to the order of nature. This had been sensed by previous investigators, but had been brought to light by none.
Hahnemann acted with the greatest precaution when he began to try the method of treatment on patients. He succeeded in curing diseases more thoroughly, more easily, and with more certainty than had been possible for any other physician.
Experiments, repeated a hundred times, and careful observations, made him certain that he had discovered the true natural law of treatment, in accordance with which every remedy would quickly cure all disease in a gentle, sure, and pleasant way, if only the signs it had produced on the healthy body corresponded as far as possible with the the symptoms of disease. He also recognized that previous successful cures must have depended upon the same principle.
Already the first short announcement of the new system of treatment that he had found aroused a storm of protest, Hahnemann was not to be deceived, and as at the time a severe epidemic of Scarlet Fever was raging, he tried to combat this disease with his new method. The results were convincing, because in accordance with the Law of Similars he had chosen Belladonna as the remedy. He saw in think the confirmation of the idea, that the law of similia similibus would hold good for all cases. The remedy which cures one specific disease being equally competent to prevent that disease. Soon he perceived that the doses of the carefully chosen remedy were too large;l and consequently he began to dilute his medicines, thereby discovering a further law of treatment, the small dose.
After proving the power of numerous medicines on the healthy body, and publishing the results (Fragmenta de viribus) he proceeded to confirm his science of treatment scientifically. That is how the “Organon of the rational art of healing “originated. Its publication was followed by violent attacks, which Hahnemann steadfastly endured. Without allowing all these persecution to lead him astray, he followed his own path, and endured much discomfort, by proving the medicines on his own body. Those who follow his observations can derive more profit from them, than they would from all the books of Materia Medica which have been written during the last twenty centuries.
Later he was helped by the co-operation of pupils in his research work, and their number continually increased. As result of this co-operation we have now the “Materia Medica Pura.” While on the one hand the attacks from enemies grew more and more venomous, on the other there was a steadily increasing stream of a patient coming for consultation. The most important personalities, among them, the Emperor Franz of Austria, the Tzar Nicholas of Russia, the Grand Duke Constantine, the King of Naples, and others, m became interested in homoeopathy, and sent their physicians-in-ordinary to Hahnemann, to be taught homoeopathy.
Then follows the grouping together of the basic principles upon which homoeopathy is erected. the whole concludes with solemn and lofty glorification of Hahnemann, and exhortations to worthy imitation.
THE DEED OF GIFT
To our well beloved and highly revered Master, the genius who discovered Homoeopathy.
As a token of lasting remembrance of the day on which 50 years ago, at Erlangen, he was robed in his Doctor’s cap and gown, friends and homoeopathic physicians have provided a dignified and worthy celebration of hit festivity, and they have unanimously resolved to create a fund for the erection of a school where students of homoeopathy would be able to receive exact scientific tuition from suitable men. For this purpose they have raised the sum of 1,250 thalers. this document of commemoration is to announce to the beloved and revered Master, the plan of his grateful disciples in homoeopathy, and if his other friends.
My God grant, that soon the day may dawn when this fund will increase by further bequests and donations, to such an extent that our school can be commenced and may flourish more and more every year, to the use and glory or Homoeopathy.
Cothen, 10th August, 1829.
CONGRATULATORY LETTER FROM THE DUKE AND DUCHESS
My dear Hofrath,
It affords me very great pleasure to be able to congratulate you on your Doctor’s jubilee. You have done such great and lasting service to mankind by discovering ad establishing the system of homoeopathy, which now is already spreading over all parts of the world, what to flatly include myself among he number of these admirers who have assembled this day to bring you the tribute of their gratitude. As Sovereign, I reel doubly called upon to give befitting recognition of your professional activities, which have done so much good to me personally, and to my country. Accept therefore my sincerest congratulations. I also send you the enclosed snuff-box, with my initials set in diamonds, which I would like you accept as a memorial of your festival, and as a slight token of a sovereign;s kind feelings. as well as of the high esteem in which I hold your services.
FERDINAND, Duke of Anhalt.
Cothen, 10th August, 1829.
Very esteemed Hofrath,
On this your festival day, when so many admires of you merits have come to acknowledge them before you once again, I too will not omit to tender you my sincerest congratulations on your jubilee. You have now reached a wonderful point, from which you can look back upon long lapse of years spent in useful activity. In the wide diffusion of homoeopathy you can see the most beautiful fruit of your many endeavours now ripening for the welfare of humanity. May you yet experience for a long time, and without any interruption this exalted joy, and be assured that I shall always be greatly interested. Accept the enclosed souvenir as a taken of my recognition, and with it the repeated assurance of my high esteem and gracious patronage.
JULIE Duchess of Anhalt.
Cothen 10th August, 1829
CONGRATULATORY LETTER OF DR. CONSTANTINE HERING,
of Paramaribo, in Surinam, of 18th May, 1829.
(Stapf’s “Archiv,” 8th volume, 2nd part, page 142.) Highly esteemed Hofrath,
I hasten to send you a hurried greeting, and thus my voice will not be absent among the many of those of your pupils and friends, who will all be giving utterance of this others; because among all your pupils I was the fortunate one chosen to hoist the flag of victory in the far of land of palms.
May my joyous acclamation fly to you with the first speeding vessel, and all the many sheets of proofs can follow later.
I feel happy to be able to spread and consolidate your teaching out here, and new I can restore health in your name, the sweetest of all gifts, which makes earth into Heaven for these must be unfortunate of all patients, despised, shunned and exilled from all human society.
I hope I may be able to tell you soon of the complete healing of psora in this its oldest form; and then when it has been accomplished, and your flag is flying here for all time I hope to be allowed to leave my post to another of your pupils, and return at last to my beloved country, to give to you, the young veteran, account of all I, have done; what would give me most heartfelt you would be if you declared yourself satisfied with the work of your pupil.
With never changing high esteem Yours DR. CONSTANTINE HERING.
HAHNEMANN’S LETTERS OF THANKS
To Dr.Stapf: Dear Colleague,
I can bear much joy and sorrow, but I was hardly able to stand the surprise of so many, and such strong proofs of the kindness and affection of my pupils and friends, with which was overwhelmed on the 10th of August. Now that I gradually regain my mental equilibrium and ponderingly examine each single present which was presented to me with such kindness of heart, I wonder more and more, one the large number of rich and handsome presents, elegantly executed in good taste,. and at the expenditure of much labour with such kind intention. I have not deserved it. These are gifts of generosity. delicacy and excessive gratitude, whose value I fully appreciate. May those who originated the idea of bestowing this great joy upon me, live long and prosper.
I beg of you to kindly communicate these feeble utterances of mine to those concerned, and to keep a large portion for yourself.
Convey my cordial greetings and appreciation to our friends Rummel, Gross, Franz and Gerstorff. I remain your devoted,
Cothen, 18th August, 1829.
To Dr. STapf:
Dearest friend, Your have rendered an immense service to me by your appropriately arranged collection and publication of my Lesser Medical Writings, amplified by those very necessary notes, and if I may be so vain as top consider my work in that light, you have rendered a service to humanity; but I think you have almost given too high an estimate of me in your excellent preface. In short, I am very much beholden to you. Would you believe it? It is only within the last few days that, owing to an accumulation of work, I have been able, properly to look through your kind well-planned, and well-executed undertaking.
I do not know how I am still able top get through such a quantity of work. But what we do so willingly, only fatigues us till bedtime, and in the morning, thank God, there is a completely return to strength.
I must close to-day with kindest regards from my family to you, your wife and family, and also from me.
Cothen, 28th September, 1829
A few days later Hahnemann wrote to Dr. Rummel. (“Allg.hom.Zeitg, ” 1852m, Vol.44, page 18.)
You have anticipated me,. for I should first have thanked your for the tremendous effort, trouble and devotion, that you together with Stapf ad the rest, must have expended upon my fete in order to celebrate it in such a magnificent manner. I observed how very eager and active you were, and I shall never forget it. It was a splendid festival, which came quite as a surprise, and greatly moved me.
And you are also undertaking with “dulce decus columenque rerum” the management of the little endowment capital, which is already a considerable sum. A kind providence seems to have visibly blessed this honourable fund.
A rich private merchant in L.Mr. C. B,. Sch-when he headed about it, asked leave to contribute something towards its Has be done so? If not, I would suggest that out send Dr. Franz a blank receipt from you without mentioning the sum, who will then go to this gentlemen, and remind him of his promise, and if he gives a sum of money, as he certainly will o., Dr. Franz can enter the amount on your receipt and five it to him. I think that it would be well to prepare a number of such receipts ( it would be best to have them printed) in order to be ale to give the donors this small remembrance of our appreciation.
When you have collected a couple of thousand thalers,. you will do well, if Muhlenbein approves, to invest it in Prussian Bonds, which will produce as interest of 80 thalers a year. Do not be in too great a hurry with your work for the repertory: I am obliged to wait for others who should have much more time so spare, and everything has to be collected before I can begin to arrange it.
I am placed in a similar position as you. Apart from the ordinary everyday business, I have such a large number of letters of thanks to write, besides those which I have already dispatched, that I do not know how to find time for it all.
I shall soon be clear of it all, for I am quite well, and then I shall except you (say a fortnight hence) and our Stapf, and I trust Gross (and Franz?) for a long visit; for we have many things to say to one another.
When you write to Stapf please tell him. as he intended to write a complete account of the 109th of August, that on that day the Natural History society of the Osterland sent me (Pierer having signed among others) a Diploma of Honorary membership, accompanied by a very courteous letter.. To day I must close as
SAMUEL HAHNEMANN Cothen, 24th August, 1829.
ON THE DEATH OF FRAU HOFRATH HAHNEMANN.
Hahnemann’s letter to Dr. Stapf:
Dear Friend and Colleague,
Very cordial thanks for your kind wishes on the advent of my seventy six year, and the reciprocity of many good wishes for the prosperity of yourself and your esteemed family at the hands of Him from whom all good things emanate to us in an unseen manner. In the moments that we can spare from our busy lives we should unceasingly thank the Great Spirit from whom all blessings flow with our whole heart, and with all our undertaking that are worthy of Him, thought in all eternity we can never thank Him too much for His goodness.