This section is from the book "An Experimental History Of The Materia Medica", by William Lewis.
Civet'ta. Civet: a soft unctuous odoriferous substance, about the consistence of honey or butter; of a whitish, yellowish, or brownish colour, and sometimes blackish; brought from the Brazils, the coast of Guinea, and the East Indies; found in certain bags situated in the lower part of the belly of an animal of the cat kind*(a). The bag has an aperture externally, by which the civet is shed or extracted.
This substance has a very fragrant smell, so strong as, when undiluted, to be disagreeable; and an unctuous subacrid taste, It is used chiefly in perfumes, rarely or never for medicinal purposes, though the singular effects which musk has been found to produce may serve as an inducement to the trial. It unites with oils, both expressed and distilled, and with animal fats: in watery or spirituous liquors it does not dissolve, but both menstrua may be strongly impregnated with its odoriferous matter, water by distillation, and rectified spirit by digestion; by trituration with mucilages, it becomes solu-ble in water.
* (a) Or rather of the weasel kind.