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Spiritus Menthae Piperitae. U. S., Br.

Botanical name:

Spiritus Menthae Piperitae. U. S., Br.

Spirit of Peppermint. Sp. Menth. Pip. [Essence of Peppermint]

Related entry: Spirit of Spearmint - Oil of Peppermint

Teinture d'essence de Menthe, Fr. Cod.; Spiritus Menthae Piperitae, P. G.; Pfefferminzspiritus, Englische Pfefferminz-essenz, G.; Alcohol de menta piperita, Sp.

"Oil of Peppermint, one hundred mils [or 3 fluidounces, 183 minims]; Peppermint, bruised, ten grammes [or 154 grains]; Alcohol, a sufficient quantity, to make one thousand mils [or 33 fluidounces, 6 1/2 fluidrachms]. Macerate the peppermint leaves, freed as much as possible from stems, during one hour in five hundred mils [or 16 fluidounces, 435 minims] of water and then strongly express them. Mix eight hundred mils [or 27 fluidounces, 24 minims] of alcohol with the oil, add the macerated leaves and enough alcohol to make one thousand mils [or 33 fluidounces, 6 1/2 fluidrachms], macerate the mixture during six hours, with frequent agitation, and then filter it. Preserve the product in amber-colored bottles." U. S.

"Oil of Peppermint, 100 millilitres; Alcohol (90 per cent.) sufficient to produce 1000 millilitres. Dissolve. When not clear, shake with a little powdered talc and filter." Br.

The distilled spirit has no advantage over a simple solution of the oil in alcohol; and this mode of preparing it has been adopted both in the U. S. and British Pharmacopoeias. The American spirit is green in color, but the British is almost colorless. P. H. Utech suggests the maceration of the peppermint in water for two hours, washing and draining, before adding to the solution of the oil; water soluble matter is removed and a more permanent green color produced. He recommends the same treatment for the spearmint in making spirit of spearmint, and the U. S. P. IX adopted this plan. It has long been popularly used under the name of essence of peppermint. The spirit of peppermint affords a convenient method of administering a dose of the volatile oil, being of such a strength that when dropped on loaf-sugar it may be taken without inconvenience.

Dose, ten to thirty minims (0.6-1.8 mils), given as just mentioned, or mixed with sweetened water.


The Dispensatory of the United States of America, 1918, was edited by Joseph P. Remington, Horatio C. Wood and others.



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