A thorny tree or shrub, of Arabia and Africa.


The concrete juice which exudes spontaneously from the stem of the Acacia vera, in the form of a gum, which hardens, on exposure, in small, irregular or roundish or oval pieces, of various sizes, more or less transparent, hard, brittle and pulverizable. It is generally either white or yellowish-white, but sometimes of a deep orange or brownish color; the powder, however, being pure white. It is inodorous, with a feeble, slightly sweetish taste, and when pure dissolves wholly away in the mouth.

In water it forms a viscid solution, known as mucilage.

It is insoluble in alcohol, ether and the oils. When kept dry it undergoes no change.

Chemical Constituents

It consists of a peculiar proximate principle known as Gum or Arabin, composed chiefly of a soluble acid substance, Gummic Acid (H2C12H13O10H2O), combined with 3 per cent. of lime, forming a soluble salt, gummate of calcium.

Medicinal Properties And Action

Demulcent and emollient. It forms an excellent adjunct to other medicinal substances of the same class, and an ingredient in all the officinal lozenges.


Of the gum, Dose 355 ad libitum. Of the mucilage water daily, or ad libitum.

Therapeutic Uses

Coughs and hoarseness, gastro-intestinal irritation, infantile diarrhoea, epistaxis and superficial hemorrhages: applied in the form of fine powder.

Dental Uses

As an emollient in the form of mucilage, to cover and protect inflamed surfaces of mucous membrane.

As a mechanical styptic, in a finely-powdered form, in superficial hemorrhages, such as from leech bites, etc.

Combined with borax, it is a useful application for inflamed mucous membrane.

Prof. Bonafoux, of the Academy of Medicine, Paris, recommends a powder composed of equal parts of gum arabic, colophony and carbon, as possessing great hemostatic powers, and capable of arresting the bleeding of large arteries.

Dental Formula

For Inflamed Mucous Surfaces.

Pulveris acacia................

Sodii boratis..................

Fiat pulvis. SlG. - Apply to inflamed part.

Dental Formula 358Dental Formula 359