Nitrobenzene, Nitrobenzol, Oil Of Mirbane. False artificial oil of bitter almond is obtained by acting on benzene with nitric acid. It is very poisonous, has the true bitter almond oil odor, owing to which substitution has been made with fatal results.
Primus Amygdalus, var. dulcis, DeCandolle.
The ripe seeds.
Habitat. W. Asia, Persia, Syria, Barbary, Morocco; naturalized in Mediterranean Basin; cultivated in Europe, S. California.
Syn. Amygd. Dulc., Jordan Almond, Malaga, Paper-shell, Greek Nuts; Fr. Amande(s) douce(s); Ger. Amygdalae dulces, Susse Mandeln.
Plant. - Small tree, 5-6 M. (15-20°) high, bark purplish; leaves bright green; flowers pale pink or white; fruit drupe, ovate, 5 Cm. (2') long, 2.5 Cm. (1') broad, sarcocarp green, leathery, splitting into two halves when ripe, and falling from the stone. This remaining stone is the commercial almond, and may be sold as such or may be bleached by sulphur dioxide, thereby also killing any attached insects. By cracking off hard shell the kernel, or, properly, the seed, is left, which, when deprived of papery endocarp by hot water, constitutes the more desirable blanched almond. Seeds (almond), 17-25 Mm.
(3/4-1') long, 10-13 Mm.(2/5-1/2') broad, 4-7 Mm. (1/6-1/3') thick, oblong-lanceolate; seed-coat light brown with numerous parallel veins, thin, easily removed by soaking in water; embryo straight, white, 2 planoconvex cotyledons; taste bland, sweet; triturated with water - milk-white, non-acid emulsion having no odor of benzaldehyde, hydrocyanic acid (abs. of bitter almond). Powder, creamy-white; microscopically - numerous small and large oil globules, crystalloids, globoids, fragments of parenchyma of endosperm and seed-coat, aleurone grains, spiral tracheae; no starch grains.
Commercial. - Of these there are several varieties (Jordan, Valencia, Sicily, Barbary, in the order of value), imported chiefly from Spain, S. France, via Marseilles or Bordeaux (soft-shelled; var. frag'ilis), and Malaga (Jordan or long) or Valencia (hard-shelled), being larger and longer than the var. amara, with more convex sides. The Jordan only, owing to easy recognition, are used in the Br. P. To preserve almonds, should keep dry, thereby preventing decomposition of amyg-dalin and fixed oil; when rancid the embryo has changed into gum bassorin, which renders them unfit for medicinal use.
Constituents. - Fixed oil 56 p. c., Emulsin (mucilage 3 p. c, sugar 6 p. c., proteids (myosin, vitel-lin, and conglutin) 24-30p. c., precipitated by acetic acid, ash 3-5 p. c. - K, Ca, Mg - phosphates); the testa of both varieties contain tannin.
Oleum Amygdalae Expressum. Expressed Oil of Almond. official. - Syn., Ol. Amygd. Exp., Oil of Sweet Almond, Oleum Amygdalae Dulcis; Br. Oleum Amygdalae, Almond Oil; Fr. Huile d'Amande (douce); Ger. Oleum Amygdalarum, Mandelol.) This fixed oil is obtained from both varieties of almonds (sweet and bitter) by grinding or bruising in an iron or stone mortar the clean and perfect kernels, enclosing mass in canvas bags and subjecting them to hydraulic pressure of 350 atmospheres between polished steel plates slightly heated (30° C; 86° F.); the expressed turbid oil is set aside in a cool place, decanted from sediment and filtered; most of the commercial oil is from the bitter almonds prior to preparing the volatile oil. It is a clear, pale straw-colored, colorless, oily liquid, almost odorless, bland taste; slightly soluble in alcohol, miscible with ether, chloroform, benzene, petroleum benzin; sp. gr. 0.912; contains triolein 75-85 p. c., tripal-mitin, trilinolein. Tests: 1. Clear at - 10° C; 14° F., congeals at - 20° C; - 4° F. (abs. of olive, cottonseed, sesame, lard oils, congealing at - 5° C; 22° F., apricot and peach oils remaining fluid at - 20° C;
Fig. 171. - Prunus Amygdalus: a, seed-kernel; b, section through seed-coats and portion of cotyledon.
- 4° F.). 2. Shake vigorously oil (2), fuming nitric acid (1), water (1) - whitish mixture, which on standing several hours at 10° C. (50° F.) separates solid white mass and slightly colored liquid (peach, apricot oils - red color; sesame, cottonseed oils - brown. Should be kept cool, in well-closed containers. Dose, ℥j_2 (30-60 Ml. (Cc.)).
Adulterations. - Olive, arachis (ground-nut), lard, cottonseed, sesame, poppy, apricot and peach oils; apricot kernels yield 25-38 p. c. of oil, which, with peach oil, is substituted often (in part or entire, for the pure article.
Preparations. - I. Seed: 1. Emulsum Amygdalae. Emulsion of Almond. (Syn., Emuls. Amygd., Milk of Almond; Br. Mistura Amygdalae, Almond Mixture, Simple Emulsion; Fr. Lait d'Amande(s); Ger. Mandelmilch.)
Manufacture: 6 p. c. Triturate, until thoroughly mixed, blanched sweet almonds 6 Gm., acacia 1 Gm., sugar 3 Gm., then rub mass with water 90 Ml. (Cc.), gradually added, until homogeneous, strain, add water q. s. 100 Ml. (Cc.), mix thoroughly. Must not be dispensed unless recently prepared. Dose, 3ij-4 (8-15 Ml. (Cc.)).
Fig. 172. - Cydonia (Pyrus) Cydonia.
Fig. 173. - Malus (Pyrus) Malus.
II. Oil: 1. Emulsum Olei Terebinthince,5 p. c. 2. Unguentum Aquae Rosaae, 56 p. c.
Unoff. Prep.: Pulvis Amygdalae Compositus (Br.) - seed 60 parts, + sugar 30, acacia 10.
Properties. - Demulcent, nutrient, laxative.
Uses. - The meal of the expressed cake as a toilet powder, and since it contains no starch it may readily be made into bread, cake, puddings, etc., which is excellent for diabetics. Seed very popular as a confection. Expressed oil, employed like olive oil, also for pulmonary trouble.