Origin. It was first pointed out by ). C. Umney and C.T.Bennett1) that the French savin oil of commerce is not a distillate from Juniperus sabina, but in the main is obtained from the tips of branches of Juniperus phoenicea, L. which is closely related to the savin. In southern France this shrub is popularly known as sabine. From twigs partly in flower and without berries, j. Rodie2) obtained 0,45 to 0,5 p. c. of oil.
Properties. As to odor, the oil resembles more closely juniper berry oil than savin oil. The following constants have been observed by Rodie as well as by Schimmel & Co.3): d15o0,863 to 0,872; aD + 2° to +7°20'; E.V. 0 to 2,1; E.V. after acetylation 4,7 to 11; soluble in 5 to 6,5 vols, and more of 90 p.c. alcohol. The properties of the oil examined by Umney and Bennett4) varied somewhat, viz. d15o 0,892; aD + 4°30'; E. V. 26 (9 p. c. acetate); E. V. after acetylation 60 (17 p. c. alcohol C10H17OH). These figures would seem to indicate that some genuine savin was used in the distillation.
Composition. According to Rodie, 90 p. c. of the oil consists of terpenes of which a-pinene (m. p. of nitrosochloride 107°, of hydrochloride 125°) constitutes the bulk. In addition Rodie has shown the presence of very small amounts (about 0,1 p. c.) of /-camphene (m. p. of isoborneol 212°), and phellandrene (m. p. of nitrite 101°). Only 6,5 p. c. of the oil boiled above 180°. They constituted a brownish-red thick liquid of a peculiar odor reminding of juniper; d15o0,946; aD - 1°10'; E.V. 18,2, corresponding to 6,37 p.c. ester C10H17Ococh3; E.V. after saponification 85,4 corresponding to 25,17 p. c. alcohol C10H17OH. Of this are present as ester and 20,14 p. c. as such. With the aid of bisulphite solution Rodie1) isolated small amounts of an aldehyde which was not identified. This substance which constitutes about 0,0166 p. c. of the oil of J. phoenicea and which appears to be wanting in other species of juniper, is, judging by its odor, a new aldehyde. Its naphthocinchoninic acid decomposes without melting, at 275 to 276°. The oxime is liquid. In the saponification liquid Rodie established the presence of acetic acid. Of water-insoluble acids, the presence of caproic acid was established in fraction 190 to 210° (732 mm.).
1) Umney and Bennett, Pharmaceutical Journ. 75 (1905), 827.
2) Bull. Soc. chim. III. 35 (1906), 922.
3) Report of Schimmel & Co. April 1907, 95.
4) Pharmaceutical Journ. 75 (1905), 827.
5,03 p. c.