Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Carbuncle. 1. A deep-coloured garnet cut en cabochon, that is, with a smooth, unfacetted convex surface. It is generally deep red or tinged with violet, the variety almandine, or iron-alumina garnet. The finest and largest specimens come from Ceylon and Peru. They often receive additional fire from a backing of metallic foil; but the carbunculus of Pliny and the bareketh and kadkod of the Hebrew Bible, all named from their fire, seem most probably to refer to this stone. 2. An inflammatory swelling of the skin and subcutaneous tissue, akin to a boil, but involving a larger area, and accompanied by more severe constitutional disturbance. Again, in a carbuncle the skin commonly gives way at several points, exposing the underlying slough, while in a boil there is but one opening. Carbuncle more usually affects men than women, and is particularly apt to occur in the subjects of gout or diabetes. The nape of the neck and the back are common situations of the disease.