What is cholera ?
Hahnemann and microbesIt will surprise some modern scientists to be told that the microbic theories which they now advance to explain any and every disease are by no means of recent date, and that Hahnemann was before them all in claiming for microbes the chief share in the causation of cholera.
In a pamphlet published in Leipzic in 1831 1 he vigorously attacked Hufeland, who advocated the atmospheric and telluric theory. In the following passage he anticipates modern views of immunity as well as of infection.
“On board ships – in whose confined spaces, filled with mouldy, watery vapours, the cholera miasm finds a favourable element for its multiplication, and grows into an enormously increased brood of those excessively minute, invisible, living creatures so inimical to human life, of which the contagious matter of the cholera most probably consists – on board these ships, I say, this concentrated aggravated miasm kills several of the crew ; the others, however, being frequently exposed to the danger of infection and thus gradually habituated to it, at length become fortified against it and no longer liable to be infected.