Mangosteen (Malay Mangostana; Garcinia Mangostana), a tree growing with an upright stem to the height of 20 ft., and bearing a very beautiful and eatable berry, esteemed the most delicious of East Indian fruits. The genus Garcinia, of which there are over 30 | species, belongs to the natural order guttiferce, which contains trees that are natives of the hottest parts of the world, and characterized by thick, entire, opposite haves and resinous juices. Several species of Garcinia furnish a portion of the gamboge of commerce. Jn the mangosteen the leaves are about 7 or 8 in. long, and about half as much in breadth at the middle, gradually tapering at both ends, of a shining green above, but of an olive color beneath. The flower resembles a single rose composed of four roundish petals, of a dark red color, which are thick at the base, but thinner toward the margins. The fruit is about the size and shape of an orange, and is crowned by a broad peltate-lobed stigma; the rind i-like that of the pomegranate, but softer, thicker, and fuller of juice; it is green at first, but changes to a dark brown with some yellowish spots; the inside is white or of a rose color, and is divided into several cells by thin partitions, in which the seeds are lodged, surrounded by a soft, juicy pulp, of a delicious flavor partaking of the strawberry and the grape; one writer describes its qualities as "utterly inexpressible." It can be eaten in great quantities without any inconvenience, and it is the only fruit which sick people in India are allowed to eat without scruple.
It is said that Solander, when in the last stage of a putrid fever at Batavia, found great benefit from sucking this delicious and refreshing fruit. The pulp has a most happy mixture of the tart and the sweet, and is no less salutary than pleasant. The dried bark of the Garcinia is astringent, and lias been used in dysentery and in infusion as a garble for sore mouth; the Chinese employ it for dyeing black. The several species are beautiful stove plants.
Mansrosteon (Garcinia nianpostana).