Terpene

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Terpene'

Terpene Meaning and Definition from WordNet (r) 2.0
    terpene n : an unsaturated hydrocarbon obtained from plants
Terpene Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Terpene \Ter"pene\, n. [See Turpentine.] (Chem.) Any one of a series of isomeric hydrocarbons of pleasant aromatic odor, occurring especially in coniferous plants and represented by oil of turpentine, but including also certain hydrocarbons found in some essential oils.
Terpene Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Turpentine \Tur"pen*tine\, n. [F. t['e]r['e]bentine, OF. also turbentine; cf. Pr. terebentina, terbentina, It. terebentina, trementina; fr. L. terebinthinus of the turpentine tree, from terebinthus the turpentine tree. Gr. ?, ?. See Terebinth.] A semifluid or fluid oleoresin, primarily the exudation of the terebinth, or turpentine, tree (Pistacia Terebinthus), a native of the Mediterranean region. It is also obtained from many coniferous trees, especially species of pine, larch, and fir. Note: There are many varieties of turpentine. Chian turpentine is produced in small quantities by the turpentine tree (Pistacia Terebinthus). Venice, Swiss, or larch turpentine, is obtained from Larix Europ[ae]a}. It is a clear, colorless balsam, having a tendency to solidify. Canada turpentine, or Canada balsam, is the purest of all the pine turpentines (see under Balsam). The Carpathian and Hungarian varieties are derived from Pinus Cembra and Pinus Mugho. Carolina turpentine, the most abundant kind, comes from the long-leaved pine (Pinus palustris). Strasburg turpentine is from the silver fir (Abies pectinata). Oil of turpentine (Chem.), a colorless oily hydrocarbon, C10H16, of a pleasant aromatic odor, obtained by the distillation of crude turpentine. It is used in making varnishes, in medicine, etc. It is the type of the terpenes and is related to cymene. Called also terebenthene, terpene, etc. Turpentine moth (Zo["o]l.), any one of several species of small tortricid moths whose larv[ae] eat the tender shoots of pine and fir trees, causing an exudation of pitch or resin. Turpentine tree (Bot.), the terebinth tree, the original source of turpentine. See Turpentine, above.

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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Terpene'


Terpenes (pronounced /ˈtɜrpiːn/ TUR-peen) are a large and varied class of organic compounds, produced primarily by a wide variety of plants, particularly conifers, though also by some insects such as termites or swallowtail butterflies, which emit terpenes from their osmeterium.

They are the major components of resin, and of turpentine produced from resin. The name "terpene" is derived from the word "turpentine". In addition to their roles as end-products in many organisms, terpenes are major biosynthetic building blocks within nearly every living creature. Steroids, for example, are derivatives of the triterpene squalene.

When terpenes are modified chemically, such as by oxidation or rearrangement of the carbon skeleton, the resulting compounds are generally referred to as terpenoids. Some authors will use the term terpene to include all terpenoids. Terpenoids are also known as isoprenoids.

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