Cinnamic acid benzyl ester, C16H1402, has been found in the oils of storax, tolu balsam and Peru balsam. According to Grimaux,2) it can be obtained artificially by boiling sodium cinna mate, alcohol and benzyl chloride in a flask connected with a reflux condenser. It forms white, shiny crystals which possess an aromatic odor, boil at 39° and decompose at about 350°.8) Occasionally it remains liquid for hours even at a temperature of 0°. When it congeals, the ester forms a wax-like looking mass of radiating crystals.
A product containing 98 p. c. of ester, when examined in the laboratory of Schimmel & Co., was found to possess the following properties:
1) Berl. Berichte 20 (1887), 647.
2) Compt. rend. 67 (1868), 1049.
3) Grimaux, Ibidem, 1051.
M. p. 31,5 to 32,5°; b. p. 195 to 200° (5 mm.), 335 to 340° with decomposition (ordinary pressure); soluble with slight turbidity in 7,5 vol. of 90 p. c. and in 1 vol. of 95 p. c. alcohol.