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therefrom; because all clinical symptoms and (supposed) medicinal aggravations will be excluded, and phenomena observed in patients taking drugs accepted only on amply sufficient evidence; because provings themselves will be rigorously scrutinised, and not admitted, at any rate to full-sized type, unless their source and method seem free from objection. And intelligible, because all observations will, where possible, be related in detail or sufficient summary, so as to preserve the order of the evolution of the drug's effects; and, where this cannot be, the symptoms of each prover will be given separately, so that some approximation may be made to the same type. We shall then have a series of individual pictures of the morbid conditions induced by our medicines; and shall only have to fit these to idiopathic disease on the principle similia similibm to have the homoeopathic method at our full disposal. Further, to aid the practitioner in covering the isolated and unusual symptoms which occasionally come before him, we shall add from time to time such indices as may enable him to discover these when they have occurred among the pathogenetic effects of our remedies.

That such a task is desirable, I need hardly argue; that it is practicable, our experience has already shown. By working as a Committee, we can so distribute the things to be done as that each member shall have assigned to him that to which he is competent; and with contributions from five or six different men a pathogenesis is rapidly constructed. Hitherto, as the whole thing is in a tentative stage, and the Society has not thoroughly made up its mind about it, we have taken our time and worked leisurely. If once the scheme were substantially set on foot, with the determination to carry it through, it would not be many years before a complete Materia Medica of the kind was in the hands of the profession. I need hardly add that each part, as it appeared, would be so much clear gain to its possessor, though from any cause he never saw another.

Our object in bringing this matter before our transatlantic brethren is, in the first instance, as I have said, to elicit their opinion upon it. But beyond this they might give us some actual help. The American Institute might appoint a committee which should be to ours what the American Committee was to the recent revisers of the authorised version of the New Testament. It would be consultative and critical, and might also aid us, as regards its indigenous literature, in our duty of seeking ultimate originals. There is also another thing which America might well do in furtherance of the project. It will be seen that we do not propose to repeat the symptoms furnished by Hahnemann and his fellow-provers to the Materia Medica Pura. The master's work has just appeared in an adequate translation and a satisfactory form; and to this we refer for his own and his disciples' contributions thereto. Now, we should be very glad if we could do the same thing with the Chronic Diseases. I fear that we cannot incorporate the pathogeneses contained in that work, and yet we are reluctant to pass them by. Could not Boine competent scholar (or group of scholars) in the United States undertake to render and present the Chronic Diseases as Dudgeon has the Materia Medica Pura? I would gladly give him the same assistance in the matter of the symptoms quoted from authors. We should have these two works in full, substantially as Hahnemann left them to us, and then supplement them by what we have elicited and collected since, given in the better form which our later lights have shown us. The past and present would thus alike be honoured—the one by preservation, the other by progress, and a provision difficult to exhaust would be made for the fast-coming future.


In July, 1881, we were informed by Professor Virchow, on his own unimpeachable authority, that at last we knew what disease was (unlike our ignorant forefathers, who didn't) namely, " an entirely material ens, a real corporeal thing—the altered cell" (vide Trans. Int. Med. Cong., 1881). And now we are informed by M. Pasteur, on authority, if possible, even more unimpeachable—his own—that disease is an entirely material ens, a real corporeal thing—le microbe! It would seem the height of madness to call in question the dictum of either of these two great savants, but an Ajax has appeared, the lightning of Zeus of the Microbes has been defied, and—strange to say —Ajax isn't a bit the worse!

In his own spirited style Dr. Piedvache gives an account, in the May number of L'Art Medical, of the closure of the debate on typhoid fever at the Academie de Medecine. The "etiology, prophylaxis, and therapeutics" of typhoid fever, which was announced as the subject of discussion, very soon resolved itself into the microbic theory of that disease, and of disease in general; and as far as practical results are concerned, the discussion was just about as useful as a discussion we have lately had nearer home on diabetes. But in the matter of animation we were far outstripped by our neighbours. The Autocrat of microbia, Pasteur himself, was present at the academy debate, and a most successful and unexpected Ajax in the person of M Peter.

M. Peter has the disadvantage—according to M. Pasteur's ideas—of being a medical man. He was unwilling to allow that the methods of chemistry, physics, and physiology were applicable to medicine. He claimed the independence of medicine in the face of the accessory sciences, which falsely claimed to have raised medicine to the status of a science. By the theories of M. Pasteur, M. Peter urged, "new medicine" was reduced to a collection of "curiosities of natural history." Speaking of Pasteur's " vaccinations "—which, as he justly urged, were not vaccinations but inoculations—he pointed out the grave " accidents" that have attended them as applied to farming. Supposing them to be applied to man, as Pasteur proposes, he (M. Peter) thus calculates the consequences:

"And the accidents? If it is the right and the duty of the farmer to sacrifice a little of his stock in order to preserve the remainder, would the father of a family be able to say in a like manner, 'I will destroy such and such a percentage of my family to preserve the rest?' It would be necessary in this case to modify the penal law. If there is about one chance in a hundred of death from these inoculations called preservatives, and if the man of the future has to protect himself against a hundred infectious diseases or thereabouts, he is pretty sure to kill himself by one or other of these inoculations. The poor man's conduct would recall that of the man in the story who threw himself into the water for fear of getting wet!"

"What," said M. Peter in another part of his address, " do your microbes signify to me? There will but be one microbe the more."

How did the great Pasteur and his satellites comport themselves under this? First rose M. Bouley—one of the satellites —whose competency M. Peter had gravely questioned, and he made this spirited reply: "He (M. Peter) finds me incompetent because he has not the competence sufficient to judge of my competence!" Bu* hear the thunderer himself:

"And when," said M. Pasteur, " we are on the eve perhaps of solving the question of the etiology of this disease by the doctrine of microbes {la raicrobie). M. Peter commits the medical blasphemy of saying "What do your microbes signify to me? There will but be one microbe the more."

The effect of this awful thunderclap is a little spoiled by the word " perhaps," as Dr. Piedvache points out, and it was quite unnecessary, as is seen from the following quotation from Pasteur's speech which Dr. Piedvache supplies:

"I tell you, in short, on the strength of a knowledge which permits me to speak .... that it is strange that a professor of the first school of medicine in the world compares to a simple 'curiosity of natural history,' facts like those of the marvellous experiments of Pouilly-le-Fort:—a knowledge which permits me to denounce the levity with which you have spoken of vaccinations by attenuated viruses. And what is it that is at stake? It is a method of prophylaxis, certain and absolute, that is at stake. I repeat, certain and absolute."

This is more like the tone of a being who inhabits a region above the sphere of argument in which we lower mortals are compelled to dwell. Our only wonder is that M. Peter survived.

But typhoid fever was the subject of discussion, as Dr. Piedvache reminds us, and something, for appearance' sake, had to be done. "A committee has been named, and conclusions will be voted on grounds where, it is said, there is general agreement—hygiene." The following bit will not bear translating, and so we reproduce it in the original, as it is too good to be lost:—"C'est le cas de songer au 'desinit in piscem;' mais pour un poisson d'avril, tenez pour certain qu'il sent l'egout d'une lieue, et il sera surtout question d'egout dans les conclusions envoyees au ministre. Pouah!"

Speaking of the theories of Claude Bernard concerning hyperpyrexia, and the fermentative theory of Brand, and consequent cold-water treatment, M. Peter remarked:

"His doctrine makes us dream; and we can fancy an Edison of the future inventing a machine furnished at one end with a thermometer, and with a cramp at the other; the thermometer should insinuate itself into the rectum, and whenever it accuses the patient of a temperature of 38-5°C. the cramp

should seize him and plunge him into cold water But do we

not see that if the morbid heat is a product of fermentation, and if the fermentation is the function of a living element, every disease with increased temperature is a disease with fermentation, and, in its kind, a disease of microbes? Consequently phlegmasias and hyperthermic diseases become diseases of microbes. Thus pneumonia, pleurisy, pericarditis; thus rheumatism and all hyperthermic diseases are infectious diseases. All should therefore be treated alike, (1) by cold, which arrests fermentation, or (2) by a parasiticide, which will kill the microbe."

Dr. Piedvache concludes his article as follows: "One quotation from M. Bouley and we have done. The treatments in vogue in typhoid fever rest absolutely on one uniform formula, and the doctors of Lyons accommodate themselves marvellously to the mathematics of the method of Brand. But M. Bouley, who would, if necessary, have invented paradox, who is paradox incarnate, gives us yet one surprise more, innocents that we are. On the 17th of April he expressed himself to this effect:

"No treatment of typhoid fever individualises more than that of Brand (who would have thought it ?). Treating all diseases by cold water is not treating them all in the same manner. Between the bath of five minutes and the bath of fifteen minutes; between the bath of 28° and that of 17°; between affusion and the bath, there is at least as much difference as between sulphate of quinine and alcohol.

"We beg pardon, M. Bouley, what varies here is the dose, and not the mode of treatment. But the continuation of the quotation goes to show on what ground the paradox rests, on an exceedingly amusing hypothesis, that of a normal typhoid fever!

"... If there is a schematic formula it is for treating normal typhoid fever—that, for example, which we treat from the beginning (these then are the cases which are normal)."

"It would be permissible to call this-language juggling with words. Let us always hold to the word 'individualisation,' which is beginning to have a normal currency in the academies. Every bad case being deniable they will maintain that the word

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