Oleum Petroselini. Oil of Parsley.
Related entries: Apiol
Synonyms.—Parsley Oil; Parsley Seed Oil.
Oil of parsley is obtained by distillation from the fruit of parsley, Carum Petroselinum, Benth. et Hook., Linn. (N.O. Umbelliferae), cultivated in nearly all temperate climates. It occurs as a colourless or yellowish, thick liquid, having an odour different from that of the herb. Specific gravity, 1.050 to 1.100; rotation, -5° to -10°.
Constituents.—The chief constituent of the oil is apiol, a stearoptene having the formula C12H14O4, which separates in crystals on cooling the oil to a low temperature. The oil obtained from German fruit contains this body in considerable quantity, and consequently becomes semi-solid at ordinary temperatures; that obtained from French fruit is much poorer in apiol. The terpene fraction of the oil boils at 160° to 164°, has a specific gravity of about 0.865, and rotation -30.8°; l-pinene is therefore probably a constituent of the oil.
Action and Uses.—Oil of parsley has properties similar to those of apiol, as described in the monograph on that substance.
Dose.—2 to 3 decimils (0.2 to 0.3 milliliters) (3 to 5 minims).