While not a constituent of volatile oils, salicylic acid amyl ester, also known as orchidee, trefle or trefol, finds extensive application in perfumery and may, therefore, be mentioned. It is a colorless or yellowish liquid, the strongly aromatic odor of which reminds of some of the orchids. In connection with products of their own make Schimmel & Co. observed the following properties:
B. p. 276 to 277° (743 mm.), 151 to 152° (15 mm.); d15.1,049 to 1,055; aD slightly dextrogyrate, up to +2°; nD20 1,505 to 1,507; soluble in about 3 vol. of 90 p. c. alcohol.
In as much as the ester is not readily saponifiable, it is necessary for a quantitative saponification to heat it with an excess of alkali for two hours on a wather bath. Indeed, it is well to apply this precaution to other esters of salicylic acid.
In addition to its use as a perfume, amyl salicylate is also employed to fix the odor of finer perfumes. Therapeutically it has also been successfully employed as a remedy against rheumatism.5)