(From acus, a needle, and pungo, to prick,) acupuncture. Bleeding performed by making many small punctures with a silver needle on the part affected. This method is practised in Siam, Japan, and other oriental nations, on all parts of the body; and employed in head aches, lethargies, convulsions, colics, etc. See Phil. Trans. No. 148. In some parts of America this practice is also in use, according to the accounts given in Dampier's Voyages, though as an ornament rather than a remedy.


(From acuo, to sharpen,) a needle. This instrument is necessary in confining the lips of wounds, taking up and tying blood-vessels, etc. They are of various forms, according to the use for which they are designed: it is of considerable importance that they should be sharp and made of good metal that is well tempered. See Bell's Surgery, vol. i.

Acus Pastoris

See Scandix.

Acus moschata. See Geranium moschatum.


(From Acusticus 130 to hear, belonging to hearing). It is applied to the auditory nerve, and to medicines or instruments used to assist, preserve, or recover hearing.


(From acus, needle, and teneo, to hold). Heister calls the portaiguille by this name; it is a handle for a needle, to make it penetrate easily when stitching a wound. Bell's Surgery, i. 16.


(From acuo, to sharpen). In botany, it is applied to a leaf ending in an acute angle, but not so taperingly as the acuminated leaf.

Acutus Morbus

An acute disease proceeds quickly to its termination, and always is attended with danger. Though there are diseases without danger, of a short duration, so are distinct from the acute, as an ephemeris, etc. In general, this term is applied to fevers; for apoplexy is never styled an acute disease, though its duration is short. Acute diseases are the opposite to chronic, which are slow in their -progress, and not immediately dangerous. Wallis's Sydenham, 1.


(From α. non, and xuw, to conceive). In Vogel's Nosology it is a defect of conception, or barrenness in women. Acutus has a similar meaning.


(From α non, and Acyrus 131 authority). A term for the herb German Leopard's bane, so named from the little note it used to be thought of in medicine; though lately highly recommended as tonic antiseptic, and considered in Germany, as a valuable remedy in putrid fevers. See Arnica Montana.


(From adamas,a diamond,) is properly the stone in the bladder; adamitum, the lithiasis, or disease called the stone. See Calculus.


The philosopher's stone. The alchemists say that it is an animal, and that it has carried

Us invisible Eve in its body from the moment they were first united by the Creator. It is also called Aquila, P/iilosophorum Lapis, Basaliscus, Benedictus, Boritis, Gryphus; by way of eminence, Antidotus. This stone, the greatest object of alchemy, is a long sought for preparation; which, when found, is to transmute or exalt impurer metals, as tin, lead, and copper, into gold and silver. Authors who have written on this stone call sulphur the maritus, or husband; and mercury, the uxor, or wife.