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(organic chemistry)
C6H4(OH)OCH3 A colorless, crystalline compound, soluble in water; used as a reagent to determine the presence of such substances as lignin, narceine, and nitrous acid.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



an organic compound with a strong, characteristic smell. It is a monomethyl ether of pyrocatechol. Colorless crystals: melting point, 28.4° C; boiling point, 205° C. Readily soluble in ethanol and chloroform and poorly soluble in petroleum ether; it dissolves iodine and sulfur. Ferric chloride gives an alcohol solution of guaiacol a blue coloration verging on green. Guaiacol is present in the distillation products of guaiacum, in the high-boiling distillates of beech tar, and in the dry distillation products of wood of leaf-bearing and coniferous species.

Guaiacol is produced synthetically by partial methylation of pyrocatechol or by diazotization of o-anisidine and decomposition of the diazo compound with water. It is used to synthesize vanillin and medicinal preparations.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.