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Homeopathic Preparations & Boxes

Acknowledgements : Photographs of a private collection of homeopathic products obtained with the kind permission of Dr. Victor Sotnik and Natalie Slovachevski. Background information: Wikipedia.
Boxes: Wood, possibly cedar.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines Homeopathy as:

“A system of medical practice founded by Hahnemann of Leipzig about 1796, according to which diseases are treated by the administration (usually of very small doses) of drugs which would produce in a healthy person symptoms closely resembling those of the disease being treated”.

The belief was that toxic substances could be curative if diluted (D or X dilution=1/10, C dilution=1/100). Hahnemann advocated a 30C dilution, ie a dilution of 10 6. The activity of the agent in such a preparation would be tiny.

Homeopathic box containing empty glass stoppered containers


In August 2005 Lancet published an extensive meta-analysis with 110 studies in each group comparing placebo controlled homeopathic treatments with similarly treated conventional medicines. The conclusion was that homeopathic remedies are most likely to be the result of a placebo effect. Yet there are over 3,000 homeopathic preparations currently on the market and proponents are vociferous in their claims.

The discipline now comprises a considerable proportion of alternative medicine and the sale of their agents produce a considerable income to many firms, usually in the developing countries. An anecdotal mention is Quinine. While the substance produced symptoms similar to Malaria in this instance, it also produced beneficial results. However this is not true of many other homeopathic remedies.

Homeopathic box with a secret drawer

Labelled containers of various agents produced at a homeopathic shop at 88 King William Street in Adelaide by Edgar Wigg circa 1930.