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benzoin

1
[ ben-zoh-in, -zoin, ben-zoh-in ]
/ ˈbɛn zoʊ ɪn, -zɔɪn, bɛnˈzoʊ ɪn /
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noun
Also called gum benjamin, gum benzoin . a reddish-brown, aromatic balsamic resin occurring in almondlike fragments and having a vanillalike odor, obtained from trees of the genus Styrax, especially S. benzoin, of Java, Sumatra, etc.: used in the manufacture of perfume and cosmetics and in medicine internally as an expectorant and externally as an antiseptic.
Also called benjamin, benjamin-bush . any plant belonging to the genus Lindera (Benzoin), of the laurel family, including the spicebush and similar aromatic plants.
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Origin of benzoin

1
1550–60; earlier benjoin<Middle French <Portuguese beijoim and Spanish benjuí<Arabic lubān jāwī frankincense of Java (lu- probably constructed as the definite article); z of benzoin<Italian benzoi ≪ Arabic

Other definitions for benzoin (2 of 2)

benzoin2
[ ben-zoh-in, -zoin, ben-zoh-in ]
/ ˈbɛn zoʊ ɪn, -zɔɪn, bɛnˈzoʊ ɪn /

noun Chemistry.
a white, slightly water-soluble powder, C14H12O2, derived by the condensation of benzaldehyde in the presence of potassium cyanide, and used in organic synthesis.

Origin of benzoin

2
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use benzoin in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for benzoin

benzoin
/ (ˈbɛnzɔɪn, -zəʊɪn, bɛnˈzəʊɪn) /

noun
Also called: benjamin a gum resin containing benzoic acid, obtained from various trees of the genus Styrax, esp S. benzoin of Java and Sumatra, and used in ointments, perfume, etc
a white or yellowish crystalline compound with a camphor-like odour used as an antiseptic and flavouring; 2-hydroxy-2-phenylacetophenone. Formula: C 6 H 5 CHOHCOC 6 H 5
any lauraceous aromatic shrub or tree of the genus Lindera, esp L. benzoin (spicebush)

Word Origin for benzoin

C16: from French benjoin, from Old Catalan benjui, from Arabic lubān jāwī, literally: frankincense of Java
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for benzoin

benzoin
[ bĕnzō-ĭn, -zoin′ ]

A resin obtained from the bark of certain tropical Asian trees of the genus Styrax and used in making perfumes and in medicine as an antiseptic.
A very toxic white or yellowish crystalline compound derived from benzaldehyde. It oxidizes easily and is used as a reducing agent. Chemical formula: C14H12O2.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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