Demonstration of ethyl benzoate

Chemicals needed

benzoic acid

ethanol GSLEICHT.gif (932 Byte) F    R 11    S (2)-7-16

or denatured alcohol

sulphuric acid 96%  GSATZEND.gif (935 Byte) C    R 35   S (1/2)-26-30-45

Dangerous substance information

ethyl benzoate GSGESUND.gif (476 Byte) Xi    R 36-37-38    S 26-36

Equipment needed

test tube
rubber plug with hole and a straight tube
stand with a double sleeve and clamp
beaker or the like
burner (preferably alcohol)

Test procedure

Comment: in many lab books heating with reflux is carried out in a simple beaker, using an additional cooling tube does offer greater safety (noxious vapors, inflammation).


The mixture can be discharged into the drainage.


Esters which cannot be easily distilled off from the reaction mixture, can be demonstrated onhand the individual components, by heating them under reflux with acid as catalyst. Inasmuch as a quantitative yield from the ester cannot be achieved due to the regression of acid and alcohol, one uses a surplus amount of one of the components, whereby the balance is shifted in the direction of the ester. One normally uses for this the cheaper component and/or the one of less molecular weight. 


DSCN0195.JPG (212485 Byte)

Apparatus before begin of reaction.


Of own device, compare with 309, "Bildung eines Benzoesäureesters", p. 181, [1]