Dr James Tyler Kent was born on March 31, 1849 in Woodhull, New York, the son of Steven Kent and his wife Caroline Tyler. Master Kent attended the Institute of Eclectic Medicine at Cincinnati, Ohio, where, in addition to standard medicine, he studied naturopathy, homeopathy, and chiropractic.
Dr Kent was Professor of Anatomy in the American Medical College, St. Louis, and he was Professor of Materia Medica at the Homoeopathic Medical College of St. Louis, the School of Homoeopathy, Philadelphia, the Hahnemann Medical College and Hospital, Chicago, and the Hering Medical College Hospital. Kent was also the President and Trustee of the Chicago Homoeopathic Hospital. Kent was a member of the Illinois State Homoeopathic Medical Society, the American Institute of Homoeopathy and the International Hahnemannian Association, besides which he holds an honorary corresponding membership in the British Homoeopathic Medical Society.
Kent is also known for developing “pictures” of constitutional types of patients. A well-known example would be his description of Sulphur as “the ragged philosopher.” There are many works based on Kent’s principles, including a book by one of his pupils, Margaret Tyler. Tyler further developed this idea of “pictures” into a book entitled Homeopathic Drug Pictures.
Dana Ullman, co-author of Everybody’s Guide to Homeopathic Medicines quoted, “Lectures on Homeopathic Philosophy is must reading for any student or practitioner of homeopathy as well as any individual seriously interested in understanding fundamental laws of health and healing.”
- Sexual Neuroses. St. Louis, MO: Maynard and Tedford, 1879.
- Address before the International Hahnemannian Association at Its Seventh Annual Meeting. 1887.
- Repertory of the Homœopathic Materia Medica. Lancaster, PA: Examiner Printing House, 1897.
- Lectures on Homoeopathic Philosophy.  Memorial Edition. Chicago: Ehrhart and Karl, 1919.
- Lectures on Homoeopathic Materia Medica. Philadelphia: Boericke & Tafel, 1905.
- New Remedies, Clinical Cases, Lesser Writings, Aphorisms and Precepts. Chicago: Ehrhart and Karl, 1926.
Dr Kent is considered to have been a great homeopath; and his philosophy, homeopathic interpretations and influence have steadily continued to grow in popularity since his death.
Kent died of Bright’s disease on June 5, 1916. Not long after his death, a contemporary quoted about him as, “Genial, gentle, devoted friend to his patients and pupils; jealous guardian of pure Homeopathy against the criticisms of those whom he considered his enemies; sensitive, embittered, retiring man in later years as he thought one after another did him wrong…; most of his patients and pupils were devoted to him and he basked in the sunshine of that devotion.”
British scholar of homeopathy, Francis Treuherz, has also characterized James Tyler Kent as “the ultimate homeopath of the period when homeopathy flourished in America.”