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’50 Reasons For Being a Homeopath’ is a lovely little book. It consists of 50 letters from the famous homeopathic doctor J. Compton Burnett to a young skeptic ‘Dr T.A.K’ & was written around 1888. It still shines with truth today.

Part 3:

You can have what opinion you like of my old pleuritis affection: I had the wretched thing till I took Bryonia, and I have never had it since. Myself, I am sweetly content with my second reason from being a Homeopath. I never said the remedy was first used by Homeopaths; that is not the essence of my proposition.

Since going over into the homeopathic camp, I have often had to treat pleurisy: that you will not find it difficult to believe. Aconite and Bryonia are the big guns of the homeopaths for pleurisy, but I will remark, as the outcome of my own experience, that it is only in what I would call PLEURITIS RHEUMATICA that they really hit the mark. Let me relate such a case to you as my third reason for being a homeopath.

Some years since I was suddenly summoned to the suburban house of a city merchant, who had caught a chill two evenings before on returning from a political meeting. When I arrived, an exquisite case of pleurisy, pleuritis rheumatica, presented itself.

The gentleman’s wife informed me that she was much exercised in her mind, as many friends had strongly urged her not to have Homeopathy in such a serious case. All very well, they said, perhaps for women and children, but she surely was not going to risk her dear husband’s life in the hands of a homeopathic practitioner? No, she would have Dr X, who lived nearby. But though, as a rule, L’homme propose et la femme dispose, in this case it was the other way about. The husband flatly refused any other than homeopathic treatment, and hence my presence. He was in a raging fever and much pain, and merely moaned, “Doctor, give me relief from this pain, and procure me some sleep.”

I gave Aconite and Bryonia – strong.

Next day he was already a little round the corner, and not in much pain unless he incautiously turned. “Doctor,” said he, “my friend Mr …. in …. road over yonder, has, I am told, something of the same thing as I have, only more in the shoulder, and he has sent to me to beg me to give you up, and have his medical man, who lives nearby, and who is considered a very clever man… what am I to say? ” I replied, “Tell him from me that I shall have you well in your city office in a few days at work, and that on your way home from the city you may call, and you will still find him ill and then you can tell him your experience, and compare notes!”

And so it happened, in a few days – I do not remember the exact number – my patient went to his city office, did a small amount of work, and on returning home called on or sent to his said friend, who was still in great pain, and remained so for some time.