Homeopathy 2006; 95(03): 182-186
DOI: 10.1016/j.homp.2006.04.002
Social and Historical
Copyright © The Faculty of Homeopathy 2006

Strange, rare and peculiar: Aborigines, Benedictines and homeopathy

Francis Treuherz

Subject Editor:
Further Information

Publication History

Received01 February 2006

accepted10 April 2006

Publication Date:
18 December 2017 (online)


Winston,[ 1 ] in his erudite and entertaining history of homeopathy, referred to Bishop Rosendo Salvado who reputedly treated Aboriginese with homeopathy in 1857, in Western Australia. This was possibly the earliest use of homeopathy in Australia. Winston[ 2 ] could not recall where he read this. What follows is an account of an attempt to discover the origins of this story.

  • References

  • 1 Winston J. The Faces of Homœopathy. Tawa: Great Auk Publishing, 1999, p 563. This book is like a troubadour's version of the history of homeopathy around the world, full of wonderful stories. The introduction was written by the man who wrote the most scholarly history of homeopathy, Harris Coulter, and it was the last thing Coulter wrote before he was incapacitated by a stroke. Winston puts the date at 1857, other sources state 1846.
  • 2 Winston J. Historian of homeopathy writing in New Zealand, personal communication.
  • 3 Boenninghausen, Baron CMF von. Therapeutic Pocket Book for Homoeopathic Physicians to be used at the bedside of the Patient and in studying the Materia Medica Pura. Munster: Coppenrath, 1846.
  • 4 When I acquired Frederick Dearborn's Homeopathy in the World War (Chicago: American Institute of Homeopathy 1923.), I assumed I should read some interesting case studies. I was disappointed. The book discusses the politics of enlisting homeopathic physicians and nurses in the US war effort and their subsequent deployment, with lists and photographs, there was no homeopathy. On the other hand in Marmaduke Sampson's Progress of homœopathy: a series of papers illustrative of the position and prospects of medical science (London: Samuel Highley for the English Homoeopathic Association 1847.), there is a full report and a practice audit by Dr Joseph Kidd of his work in the famine in Ireland with the names of all his patients, remedies prescribed and some illustrative case studies.
  • 5 Hutchison D. A Town Like no other, the Living Traditions of New Norcia. South Fremantle: Fremantle Arts Centre Press, 1977. Salvado R. (Stormon EJ – trans. & ed.). The Salvado Memoirs. Perth: University of Western Australia Press, 1977. Unattributed. The story of New Norcia, the West Australian Benedictine Mission. New Norcia: The Benedictine Community of New Norcia, 1979. Russo G. Lord Abbott of the Wilderness, The Life and Times of Bishop Salvado. Melbourne: Polding Press: 1980.
  • 6 Salvado, 1977, p 21.
  • 7 Russo, 1980, p 44.
  • 8 Salvado, 1977, p 42.
  • 9 Hutchison, 1977, pp. 33–44.
  • 10 Salvado, 1977, p 50.
  • 11 Salvado, 1977, p 50.
  • 12 Salvado, 1977, p 77.
  • 13 Salvado, 1977, pp. 95–96.
  • 14 Johnson, S, librarian at New Norcia, personal communication.
  • 15 Biddle P. Rosendo Salvado, Benedictine homoeopath. Tjurunga: an Australasian Benedictine Rev 1999; 56: 33–36 (A Good Samaritan Sister who is also a trained homeopath).
  • 16 McKinley W. Archivist at New Norcia, personal communication.
  • 17 Salvado, 1977, p 171.
  • 18 Russo, 1980, pp. 167–168.
  • 19 Berndt RN. In Salvado, 1997, Appendix II, p 273.
  • 20 Biddle, 1999, identified only 9 homeopathy titles in the library.
  • 21 Headland published books by Chepmell, Curie, Hahnemann, Hartlaub, Henderson, Hering, Jahr, Marsden; and sold single medicines and kits.
  • 22 Martyr P. Protectors of the public, medical orthodoxy and the suppression of alternative practice in Western Australia, 1870–1914. In: Historical Reflections, Stud Western Australian History, 1993, pp. 149–168 (156).
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  • 26 www.hullcc.gov.uk/museums/maritime/exhibits.php.
  • 27 www.mhs.ox.ac.uk.
  • 28 www.leeds.gov.uk/abbeyhouse/default.asp.
  • 29 Hagger J. Australian Colonial Medicine. Adelaide, Vic: Rigby, 1979, p 35.
  • 30 The Medical Telephone. Hobart: Gould Homoeopathic Pharmacy, 1883.
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  • 34 Wilson BG. A Zealous Minister of the Gospel: being a Memoir of the Reverend Gilmore Wilson, Minister of the Wharf Street Baptist Church, Brisbane, from 1858 to 1878. Brisbane: WR Smith & Paterson, 1940. Nickerson SW. The Rev BG Wilson, Queensland Baptist founding father. Brisbane: Baptist Historical Society of Queensland, 1998.
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  • 37 Neatby E.A. London: John Bale & Danielsson; Bale's Medical Manuals for Missionaries, Vol 2: Manual of Homoeotherapeutics. 1925.
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  • 39 Iltis J. Australian Dictionary of Biography [Simpson, Stephen]. Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 1967, p 448. Bradford TL. The Pioneers of Homoeopathy [Simpson, Stephen]. Philadelphia: Boericke & Tafel, 1897, p 610.
  • 40 Stephen S. A Practical View of Homeopathy being an Address to British Practitioners on the General Applicability and Superior Efficacy of the Homœopathic Method in the Treatment of Disease with Cases. London: JB Bailliere, 1836 (This book has been reprinted; Brighton, MA: Elibron Classics).
  • 41 Templeton J. Prince Henry's The Evolution of a Melbourne Hospital. Melbourne: Robertson & Mullens; 1969.
  • 42 Gill J. The Story of the Launceston Homoeopathic Hospital. Launceston: Homespun, 1990. Gannell L. Inasmuch, St John's Hospital, Hobart 1899–1999. Hobart: Mazengarb Leo Burnett, 1999.
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  • 44 John Morgan, MSc MRPharmS RSHom FSHom, Personal communication.
  • 45 www.h-e-c.com.au/.