Agaric of the oak, or the Agaricus Quercimus, L. is well known as a styptic, when applied to external wounds. M. Adouillet, an eminent French surgeon, has employed it, instead of ligatures, on the arteries, in cases of amputation, by applying small pieces of it to the mouths of these vessels, and afterwards covering the stump with lint.
This species of agaric may be usefully employed for the purpose of dying silks of a black colour : to succeed in the experiment, it ought to be cut in small pieces, and boiled in a solution of copperas, over a gentle tire, till the dye be sufficiently strong.
Another species of agaric, namely, the common puff-bull, has, by farriers also, been used as a styptic: and, in an experiment made a horse, it completely stopped, in a few minutes, a hemorrhage from one of the largest arteries. The wound afterwards healed, without any farther discharge.
We cannot, on this occasion, omit to remark, mat persons living in retired situations, and particularly those employed in husbandry, as well as artizans working with sharp instruments, ought always to be provided with some styptic, which, at a distance from medical aid, and in a moment of emergency, may sometimes save an useful animal, and even the life of a fellow-creature, by its timely application.
The efficacy of agaric, as a styptic for external wounds, has, however, been disputed by Mr. Neale, a surgeon of the London Hospital, who published some observations on the subject, in the year 1757 He asserts, that he has seen it used on several occasions, and frequently employed it himself, without effect, nay, to the detriment of the patient.