Slaters, Millepes, or Wood-Louse., Oniscus asellus, 1 . an insect which is generally found in cellars, beneath stones, and in cold humid places. It is of an oval form; of different colours ; and seldom exceeds half an inch in length.
Millepedes have a faint, unpleasant smell, and a slightly pungent, sweetish, though nauseous, taste. They have been greatly recommended in suppressions of urine ; in the jaundice; for weakness of sight; in obstructions of the intestines ; and various other complaints. Their efficacy, however, in these disorders, is doubtful. When dried, pulverized, and infused in wine, they are said to have afforded great relief in the hooping-cough. - In dropsies, and pituitous atfections of the chest, Gesenius directs the expressed juice of slaters to be converted into syrup, with an equal quantity of refined sugar, and to be taken in single table-spoonfuls by adults, or in a tea-spoonful by children, several times in the day : this preparation has, in many desperate cases, proved uncommonly efficacious.