Benzilic acid is a white crystalline aromatic acid soluble in many primary alcohols. It can be prepared by heating mixture of benzil, alcohol and potassium hydroxide. The other preparation way is through benzaldehyde, which dimerizates to benzil and it is further transformed by benzilic acid rearrangement to benzilic acid. This reaction was also the first example of benzilic acid rearrangement performed by Liebig in 1838.
Benzeneacetic acid, α-hydroxy-α-phenyl-
Appearance & Physical State
180ºC (13 mmHg)
1.41 g/L (25 ºC)
Stable. Incompatible with strong oxidizing agents. Combustible.
Keep container closed when not in use. Store in a tightly closed container. Store in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area away from incompatible substances.