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.
The 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 to develop.
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
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
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 and thereafter.
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.
Graeco-Arabic 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 consideration.
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 constitutions.
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
- 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.
In addition 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
Please 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.
Also 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.