See Verbena. Casamum. See Arthanita. Cascarllla. Cascarilla. The Spaniards apply this word to the Peruvian bark, as we apply the word bark to distinguish the same material. It is a diminutive of cascara, the Spanish word for bark or shell; but is applied by us to a peculiar bark, very different from the Peruvian. See Thuris cortex. Caschu. See Terra Japonica. Caseus, (from the Arabic term casah, milk). Cheese. When old, it is called palaetyrus. Aristaeus, a pupil of Chiron, is said to have first discovered the art of making it. The ancients were well acquainted with the methods of coagulating milk; and for this purpose they boiled it, mixed it with vinegar, infused the branches of the fig tree in it, or added salt with sour milk.

The curd of milk is more or less dense, according as the whey is more or less perfectly separated from it. Its cohesion is never considerable; but the chief art of making cheese consists in separating as perfectly as possible the whey, for a very small proportion of moisture accelerates fermentation and putrefaction.

Curd or cheese is an albuminous substance, not unlike the white of an egg, or the coagulum of the blood. It dissolves in alkalis, but most perfectly in the caustic mineral alkali; and from its solution a volatile alkaline smell arises. The vitriolic and nitrous acids dissolve it; the marine acid less readily. In hot water it hardens; and cold has no effect on it. If the cheese is good, it melts easily: if poor, it becomes crisp and horny. By distillation, the water which first arises is nearly taste-less, but soon putrefies. In a greater heat the cheese blisters, and yields hydrogenous and carbonated gas, with some ammonia, and a heavy stinking oil. Its ashes contain phosphat of lime and calcareous earth. The cupd of goat and cow's milk is solid and elastic; that of the ass and mare less solid; that of the sheep and women almost or entirely fluid. It is a common opinion, that old cheese digests every thing, yet is left un-digested itself; but this is without a proper foundation. New cheese digests with difficulty, and when old is acrid and hot. Cheese made from the milk of sheep digests sooner than that from cows, but it is less nourishing; that from the milk of goats sooner than either, but is the least nourishing. In general, it is a kind of food fit only for the laborious, or those whose organs of digestion are strong. See Galen de Alim. Facult.

Dr. Cullen, in his Materia Medica, vol. i. gives a very minute account of cheese, and tells us "the caseous or coagulable part of milk contains certainly a great, if not the greatest part of the nourishment which milk affords, and is in itself the more nourishing the more it is united with the oily parts. When the congulum has the whey taken from it, it becomes a more nutritious substance than the milk it was taken from, but will probably be of more difficult digestion. Cheese in its dried state, when made from milk previously deprived of its cream, may be still nutritious, though of difficult digestion; but made of entire milk must be more nourishing, and of easier digestion. and made of entire milk, with a portion of cream taken from other milk added to it, will be still more nourishing, but hardly of less easy digestion, as the oil everywhere interposed between the parts of the gluten must render its adhesion less firm; and if cheese is made of cream alone, that will be certainly the most nutritious, and of the easiest digestion."

But cheese is not only made of cows' milk alone, but also of the milk of ewes and goats, and often of a portion of the two latter added to cows' milk. In all these cases, as the milk of ewes and cows contains a larger portion of the oily and caseous parts, so in proportion as these are employed the cheese becomes more nutritious, but at the same time often occasions inconvenience from its richness.

As cheese is employed not only when recent and fresh, but also under various degrees of corruption, so it acquires new qualities; and, according to the degree of corruption, it becomes more acrid and stimulant, partly by the acrimony thus acquired, and partly by the great number of insects that are very constantly generated in that state. It can then hardly be taken in such a quantity as to be considered as alimentary; and its effects as a condiment influencing the digestion of other food are difficult to explain, though they are commonly admitted. When toasted, it is certainly not easily digested by weak stomachs; as a portion of the oil is separated, and the coagulum rendered ho::

In general, cheese, as an aliment, is, as we have remarked, adapted to the healthy, the strong, and laborious. The coagulum always contains a sufficient degree of moisture to approach the putrid state, which is prevented from advancing rapidly, by the close compression it experiences. Yet, as a medicinal dietetic, it is often useful, even in debilitated stomachs. In those where acid abounds, good cheese is particularly serviceable; and in cases of flatulence it often relieves. It has been recommended as a diet in leucorrhoea; and we can perceive some connection between this complaint and an acid stomach, since absorbents have been recommended for its relief: as a condiment it is well known, and it has been properly said, that cheese digests every thing but itself; in other words, though undigestible, yet by its stimulus, or its antacid power, it contributes to the digestion of the various heterogeneous substances of a modern luxurious dinner, since a redundant acid is its most frequent consequence. It may be of use to know, that soft cheese relieves that unpleasing sensation often the consequence of an acid, which we express by the teeth being an-edge.

With respect to its component parts, cheese chiefly differs from the excess or defect of its oily part. The opposite examples are the cream cheeses of Bath, and the scald-milk cheese of the West. In the former, cream is added, and it is of course in a larger proportion than from the milk which nature offers. The consequence is, that compression is inadmissible: the acid fermentation soon comes on, increased fluidity is the consequence, and from that putrefaction. The Bath cheese is nutritious, and we think easy of digestion. The Stilton cheese is not very different; and the Cheshire, the Gloucestershire, and the Bridgewater, follow in the order. Each is more oily and nutritious than its successor: each in the inverse order is more stimulating and indigestible, and still more so the farther the putrefactive process is advanced.

On the opposite side, the scald-milk cheese contains the curd almost wholly without the oil, which is artificially separated by heating the milk to a degree just below the boiling point. It is hard and indigestible; but we may add, that this only is the cheese proper for cements. From its dryness, it does not readily putrefy; though when putrid it is scarcely more indigestible than in its most perfect state.

The Roquefort cheese is soft, mild, and pleasant. The peculiar excellence of this cheese, from M. Chap-tal's description, consists in checking the fermentation when it has reached a given point; for if neglected, it contracts a disagreeably sour taste. The milk of goats and sheep are only employed. The Swiss cheese derives its excellence from a similar management. It is cellular; and the cavities are filled with whey, which is in its passage from the acid to the putrid state. The cheese is also rich, and the peculiar poignancy of this whey renders it such a favourite with the epicure. The smell when toasted is so much heightened as to be generally unpleasing, except to the sensualist. - But we cannot enlarge this disquisition: these details belong rather to the economical science than to medicine. See Lac.