Sir John Weir



John Weir

Sir John Weir had an amazing career with many distinguished accomplishments. These included being physician to the royal family in London, president of the British Homoeopathic Congress, and Compton Burnett Professor of Materia Medica.

Weir used the Tyler Scholarship to spend six months at the Hering Homoeopathic College in Chicago, where Dr. Kent and Dr. Allen were the lecturers in Materia Medica.

Weir came back from America, convinced that Kent was the greatest exponent of Hahnemann in his day, but he had to face the prejudice and bias of the British Journal of Homeopathy which viewed Kent's Materia Medica as unsuitable.

The controversy raged around low vs. high dose prescribing, as low potency pathological prescribing was usual in Britain until shortly before the First World War.

The Editors of the British Homeopathic Journal advised Hughes' Pharmacodynamics for the beginner, but Weir persisted in giving enquirers Kents' Materia Medica. Weir defended the use of Kents' Repertory, which had been his constant companion ever since he returned from Chicago.

Weir emphasized the constant reading that was required to know the materia medica, and recommended reading a drug a day, preferably in different books to get a comprehensive picture.

Just before the outbreak of World War I, Weir contributed a paper to the British Homoeopathic Congress, insisting on the necessity of the single drug, single dose, and initial aggravation. He insisted there must be no interference with the reaction. In compliance with his single dose theory, Weir used high dose prescribing.

Opposition to Weirs teachings was strong. In July 1917, a census was taken of the drugs prescribed at the hospital during that month; of 1664 prescriptions, only 39 were of potencies above the 200.

In 1911, Weir was appointed Compton Burnett Professor of Materia Medica. His lectures were to be on the subject of homoeopathic prescribing and he continued to give this course of lectures every year until 1960.

It was in this year too, that Weir was appointed Assistant Physician to the London Homoeopathic Hospital with opportunities for teaching in outpatient settings and on the wards.

As well as promoting high dose prescribing, Weir promoted homeopathy to allopathic physicians. Appointed K.C. V.O. in 1932, Sir John Weir invaded the Royal Society of Medicine, to read a paper on 'Homoeopathy, an explanation of its principles.'

Information from Encyclopedia Homeopathica