One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A white crystalline compound present in oil of thyme and used as a flavouring and preservative.
Alternative name: 2-isopropyl-5-methylphenol; chemical formula: C₁₀H₁₃OH
- ‘Some ingredients added to the water, e.g. menthol, eucalyptus, camphor, thymol and pine oil also give a sensation of clearing the passageways.’
- ‘Several of these - sage, rosemary, thyme, horsebalm and mountain dittany - are rich in thymol and carvacrol, compounds that help muscles relax.’
- ‘Other natural antimicrobials include the phenolic compounds thymol, found in thyme, oregano and sage, and eugenol, the main flavour ingredient of cloves and allspice.’
- ‘The combination of thymol, eucalyptol, methyl salicylate and menthol in an alcohol base may have antifungal activity.’
- ‘Listerine also contains essential oils from herbs including eucalyptol, thymol, methyl salicylate and menthol.’
Mid 19th century: from Greek thumon ‘thyme’ + -ol.
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