# Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 70.djvu/259

1. This word benzine is sadly overworked. Spelled with an e, benzene, it is the correct scientific name for a definite chemical compound of the composition represented by the formula ${\displaystyle C_{6}H_{6}}$. Spelled with an i, benzine or benzin, it is often used to mean benzene, toluene, xylene, mesitylene, or several other things obtained from the distillation of coal, or a mixture of any two or more of these things. More frequently it means any one of the score of substances obtained in the distillation of crude American petroleum before the temperature is high enough to drive off what we call kerosene. That is to say, it may mean rhigolene, cymogene, gasolene, or naphtha, petroleum-ether or ligroin, or a mixture of these. As these are themselves mixtures, the confusion is worse confounded. Many, if not most chemists, in an effort to avoid misunderstandings, adopted the German word benzol to indicate that definite and important compound ${\displaystyle C_{6}H_{6}}$, but the relief was for but a little while. Now benzol, too, has begun to be used in certain industries, as if it were synonymous with benzine or benzene. When one of these three words is used it is impossible to tell immediately what is meant; the meaning may be deducible later from the context, frequently it is not, as the chances are almost even that the speaker himself does not know. It covers a multitude of inaccuracies; perhaps that is why the word is so popular.