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2 definitions found
 for volatile oils
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Volatile \Vol"a*tile\, a. [F. volatil, L. volatilis, fr. volare
     to fly, perhaps akin to velox swift, E. velocity. Cf.
     1. Passing through the air on wings, or by the buoyant force
        of the atmosphere; flying; having the power to fly. [Obs.]
        [1913 Webster]
     2. Capable of wasting away, or of easily passing into the
        aeriform state; subject to evaporation.
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     Note: Substances which affect the smell with pungent or
           fragrant odors, as musk, hartshorn, and essential oils,
           are called volatile substances, because they waste away
           on exposure to the atmosphere. Alcohol and ether are
           called volatile liquids for a similar reason, and
           because they easily pass into the state of vapor on the
           application of heat. On the contrary, gold is a fixed
           substance, because it does not suffer waste, even when
           exposed to the heat of a furnace; and oils are called
           fixed when they do not evaporate on simple exposure to
           the atmosphere.
           [1913 Webster]
     3. Fig.: Light-hearted; easily affected by circumstances;
        airy; lively; hence, changeable; fickle; as, a volatile
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              You are as giddy and volatile as ever. --Swift.
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     Volatile alkali. (Old Chem.) See under Alkali.
     Volatile liniment, a liniment composed of sweet oil and
        ammonia, so called from the readiness with which the
        latter evaporates.
     Volatile oils. (Chem.) See Essential oils, under
        [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Essential \Es*sen"tial\ ([e^]s*s[e^]n"sjal), a. [Cf. F.
     essentiel. See Essence.]
     1. Belonging to the essence, or that which makes an object,
        or class of objects, what it is.
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              Majestic as the voice sometimes became, there was
              forever in it an essential character of
              plaintiveness.                        --Hawthorne.
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     2. Hence, really existing; existent.
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              Is it true, that thou art but a name,
              And no essential thing?               --Webster
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     3. Important in the highest degree; indispensable to the
        attainment of an object; indispensably necessary.
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              Judgment's more essential to a general
              Than courage.                         --Denham.
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              How to live? -- that is the essential question for
              us.                                   --H. Spencer.
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     4. Containing the essence or characteristic portion of a
        substance, as of a plant; highly rectified; pure; hence,
        unmixed; as, an essential oil. "Mine own essential
        horror." --Ford.
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     5. (Mus.) Necessary; indispensable; -- said of those tones
        which constitute a chord, in distinction from ornamental
        or passing tones.
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     6. (Med.) Idiopathic; independent of other diseases.
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     Essential character (Biol.), the prominent characteristics
        which serve to distinguish one genus, species, etc., from
     Essential disease, Essential fever (Med.), one that is
        not dependent on another.
     Essential oils (Chem.), a class of volatile oils, extracted
        from plants, fruits, or flowers, having each its
        characteristic odor, and hot burning taste. They are used
        in essences, perfumery, etc., and include many varieties
        of compounds; as lemon oil is a terpene, oil of bitter
        almonds an aldehyde, oil of wintergreen an ethereal
        salt, etc.; -- called also volatile oils in distinction
        from the fixed or nonvolatile.
        [1913 Webster]

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