Genetics and the Humoral Inherent Constitutions.
The understanding that the attributes of parents were somehow
transmitted to their offspring, predates Hippocrates.
The one important difference however between the basic concepts
and the humoral theory was the belief that inherent qualities
were not just a matter of the nature of the "ancestral
seed", but could be modified by the acquired humoral temperament of
the parents. This idea may have come in handy at times to explain
away any suspicious differences in appearance between once's
children, but would tend to be hotly disputed by most modern
geneticists. Nevertheless, there is mounting evidence that both
a mother's and a father's lifestyle can, for better or worse,
cause the expression or suppression of genes in their offspring
and thus affect their health, even down the generations.
Inherent Constitutions were regarded in a rather matter of fact
like manner until the later part of the 17th. century, when
an interest in what we would now regard as genetics, was beginning
In the 18th. century the Swiss Physiognomist
Johann Lavater published a monograph in which he described the
four Inherent Constitutions as based upon the humoral system
which was in common medical use at the time (see the four images
below). He also correlated these constitutions with Astrological
influences that were thought to determine one's physical appearance
and character at birth. Thus Sanguine was associated with the
Sun and Jupiter, Phlegmatic with the Moon and Venus, Choleric
with Mercury and Mars, and Melancholic with Mercury and Saturn.
Based on this idea, the birth horoscope could therefore be used
to determine the inherent humoral influences in an individual.
The Four Humoral Constitutions
according to Johann Lavater (circa 1700 A.D.)
The Rise of the Inherent Constitutions.
The first researches in the area of human genotype classifications
were undertaken by Dr. Francis Gall (1757 - 1858) of Austria.
He commenced practice as a physician in Vienna in 1785, and
immediately set out to follow what had been an interest since
boyhood, namely the development of a system of classification
that would provide a psychosomatic connection between the mental
faculties and physical characteristics. Subsequently he began
to lecture on Phrenology (the science of cerebrocranial physiology)
and on the genotype constitutions in 1796. Originally he proposed
two psychosomatic constitutions: the Mental Motive and the Vital
constitutions. Over a period of years however, he and his student
Spurzheim expanded upon these constitutions in their writings,
and stimulated the interest of many others by their development
of a comprehensive system of genotype constitutions. Francis
Gall and Spurzheim collaborated on a number of books, one of
which: "Introduction au Cours de Physiologie de Cerveau" (Introductory
course on brain physiology), was published in 1808, and is perhaps
their best known work.
Another outstanding early 19th. century researcher into the
human genotype classification was Dr. Jacques, who published
a book titled "Jacques' Temperaments" in which four
basic character types were proposed, which he termed the Sanguine,
Lymphatic, Bilious and Nervous types. What made Dr. Jacques'
researches particularly interesting was that he based his constitutions
upon the Graeco-Arabic four element theory, and upon the
doctrine of the four temperaments and their associated four
humors. In the wake of his work, Dr. Mary O. Stanton developed
a system of five constitutions, the rationale and application
of which she published in the mid to late 1800's. She divided
human genotypes into five basic physiological systems: the Vegetative
(or Vital) System, the Thoracic System (corresponding to Jacques'
Sanguine), the Muscular System, the Osseous System and the Brain
and Nervous System.
None of these systems eventually flourished, because they
either introduced little that was of any direct practical use,
or because they were too far outside the European traditions,
and therefore lacked any continuity with the past.
Victor G. Rocine was familiar with the works of all these
people and read them with interest. His background in Graeco-Arabic Medicine and his studies and work in nutrition and Homeopathy
however, gave him a somewhat different perspective. He
and his pupils collected a fast amount of information on human
genetic variability, and used this to further develop the work
done by the earlier researchers.
By 1908 he had developed
and implemented an inclusive genotype system of classification
that contained twenty distinct inherent constitutional types,
which correlated perfectly with the classifications of the classical
temperaments of Graeco-Arabic Medicine. It was not until
Victor Rocine produced his comprehensive system of the five
primary constitutions and the twenty Genotype crases that a
system became available that expanded in detail on the Graeco-Arabic
Medicine concepts, and fitted them for the twentieth century
Introduction to the Rocine Constitutions.
Biological diversity within a species is one of the most
obvious facts of Nature, and bears considerable relevance and
importance to the Graeco-Arabic physician.
Medicine presents a holistic method of maintaining health and
treating disease, a practitioner of Graeco-Arabic Medicine therefore
needs to assess each case on its own individual merits, and provide the appropriate treatment accordingly. It easy to
comprehend that it is not only the assessment of the acquired
temperamental type that is important in the formulation of a
successful treatment procedure, but that the influence of the
inborn characteristics or inherent constitution of any given
case which may come before a physician must also be given due
Humans, as all other species of life on this planet, are
biologically diverse; this means, that the effect from a given
treatment, remedy or therapeutic agent that may be observed
in one person, may be different or even of an opposite nature
in another, due to basic individual genetic variations. That
this natural variance represents a fundamental law of nature
which must be observed in the application of therapeutics, has
been recognised since the earliest days in all systems of traditional
medicine, which has led to the formation of a number of paradigms
by various cultures. In the West this paradigm developed into
a distinctive system of treatment based upon a Doctrine of the
Constitutions; the greatest of which, and the one that is most
firmly founded on the ancient Graeco-Arabic medical traditions, is without
any doubt that compiled by Victor G. Rocine D.Sc.
Rocine's Primary Constitutions.
Rocine's constitutions consists of four primary constitutions,
each of which is subdivided into a number of subtypes, the genotype
crases. The four primary constitutions are: The Mental, the Muscular, the Vital and the Osseous
Four Primary Constitutions.
© 2007 Susan Hysen.
- Firstly the Mental primary constitution is the genotype
form of the Choleric phenotype temperament and corresponds
to the Fire element. The Mental primary constitution consists
of four Genotype crases: the Neurogenic, the Nervi-Motive,
the Exesthesic and the Pathetic types.
- Secondly the Muscular primary constitutional type is
the genotype of the Sanguine phenotype temperament and corresponds
to the Air element. This primary constitution consists of
three Genotype crases: the Desmogenic, the Marasmic and
the Myogenic types.
- Thirdly the Vital primary constitution is the genotype
of the Phlegmatic phenotype temperament; it corresponds
to the Water element. The Vital primary constitution in
turn consists of six Genotype crases: the Carboferic, the
Hydripheric, the Nitropheric, the Oxypheric, the Lipopheric
and the Pallinomic.
- Fourthly there is the Osseous primary constitution which
is the genotype of the Melancholic phenotype temperament;
it corresponds to the Earth element. The Osseous primary
constitution consists of four Genotype crases: the Calciferic,
the Isogenic, the Sillevitic and the Barotic.
- Rocine also established a fifth, non-elemental and extra
primary constitution, the Pathogenic primary constitution,
which consists of the three Genotype crases: the Atrophic,
the Medeic and the Pargenic.
Rocine integrated with his genotype constitutions, a comprehensive
system of biochemical and nutritional approaches that were not
only of value to those practising in his day according to the
principles of Graeco-Arabic Medicine, but also to practitioners
of the - at that time - ascendant Homeopathic healing system,
as his genotype constitutions allowed the Homeopathic miasms
to link in with the traditional Graeco-Arabic Medicine concepts
of the four elements. This system has even today been proven
quite effectual by practitioners who use his principles. As
this system is comprehensive and extensive, and its coverage
on a Web Page would not be practical, we have, in order to facilitate
the study of his system by those interested in applying it,
provided below links to three PDF documents containing
the complete contents of Victor Rocine's original study notes
that have been edited by us into modern English.
Section 3 contain some added material by Susan Hysen R.N.,N.D.,M.D.(Trad.Med)
that covers the major minerals whose importance in human health
has been discovered since Rocine's time.
note that these notes are © copyright; and that although they
are made freely available to all those interested, this is done
on condition that they are not redistributed in their original
form or in any altered form, whether this be in physical or electronic format,
and that these notes are not used for any commercial purpose
without the express written permission of the publisher.
please note that certain aspects of the information in these
notes is now somewhat dated; which means that their application
will require educated interpretation. Thus they are not intended
as stand-alone manuals for treatment, but are provided in good
faith for educational purposes, as historical records of the
principles of Traditional Healing.
This is the completed set of Rocine's original study notes. If
you previously downloaded Section 1, please ensure to download this
again, as the page numbers of the
Index have been corrected.