Coccus-Cochineal.-The dried female insect, Coccus Cacti. Reared in Mexico and Teneriffe.

Characters.-Ovate, plano-convex, about two lines long, wrinkled, black or greyish-white; yields, when crushed, a puce-coloured powder. The greyish-white insect quickly becomes black when warmed before the fire.

Impurities.-Inferior Cochineal is "faced" with various white or black powders to improve its appearance. It resembles Kino, which has an astringent taste.

Composition.-Cochineal contains a red colouring principle, carmin or carminic acid, brownish-purple, amorphous; readily soluble in water and spirit.

Preparations. Tinctura Cocci.-1 in 8.-Dose, 1/2 to 1 1/2 fl.dr.

Coccus is also an ingredient of Tinctura Cardamomi Composita, (60 gr. to 1 pint); and Tinctura Cinchonas Composita, (30 gr. to 1 pint).

Action And Uses

Cochineal is used as a colouring material only.