Sponge, or Spongia, L. a genus of animal plants, comprehending 50 species, the principal of which is the officinalis, or Common Sponge. It is imported from the Levant: being a soft, porous, light, substance, which easily imbibes water.
Sponge is of extensive utility in domestic economy, medicine, and surgery. If it be cut in small pieces, fried or dipped in honey, and given to vermin, it distends their intestines, and effectually destroys them (see vol. iii. p. 476). As it strongly adheres to the orifices of wounded vessels, it is advantageously employed as a styptic ; often preventing the effusion of blood more effectually than the puff-ball or a g a R i c . - When burnt and pulverized, it has been successfully administered internally, in scrophulous complaints, and cutaneous diseases, in doses of one scruple and upwards: it is also considered as a specific, on account of its efficacy in removing the glandular swelling of the nec known under the name of bron' chocele. - See Wen.