from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A colorless, oily, poisonous benzene derivative, C6H7N, used in the manufacture of rubber, dyes, resins, pharmaceuticals, and varnishes.
  • adjective Derived from aniline.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Amidobenzol, C6H5NH2, a substance which furnishes a number of brilliant dyes.
  • Pertaining to or derived from aniline: as, aniline colors.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Made from, or of the nature of, aniline.
  • noun (Chem.) An organic base belonging to the phenylamines. It may be regarded as ammonia in which one hydrogen atom has been replaced by the radical phenyl. It is a colorless, oily liquid, originally obtained from indigo by distillation, but now largely manufactured from coal tar or nitrobenzene as a base from which many brilliant dyes are made.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun organic chemistry The simplest aromatic amine, C6H5NH2, synthesized by the reduction of nitrobenzene; it is a colourless oily basic poisonous liquid used in the manufacture of dyes and pharmaceuticals.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun oily poisonous liquid amine obtained from nitrobenzene and used to make dyes and plastics and medicines


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[anil + –ine.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

German Anilin (coined by German Chemist Carl Julius Fritzsche). From Portuguese anil ("indigo") + -in ("-ine (organic compounds)").


  • A.W. von Hofmann investigated these variously prepared substances, and proved them to be identical, and thenceforth they took their place as one body, under the name aniline or phenylamine.

    Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 2, Part 1, Slice 1

  • FURFURAL ANILINE: A resin formed from furfural and aniline, which is a cyclic amine derived from benzene, and is nowadays obtained from coal.

    Chapter 11

  • The discovery of the so-called aniline dyes has greatly increased the variety of colors available.

    Textiles and Clothing

  • The chief poisonous dyes are the red and yellow coralline, substances derived from that series of chemical bodies which have been obtained of late years from coal tar, and commonly known as the aniline series.

    Hygienic Physiology : with Special Reference to the Use of Alcoholic Drinks and Narcotics

  • It is well known that in coal-tar is found a series of ammonia-like bases, aniline or amido-benzol, toluidine or amido-toluol, and xylidine or amido-xylol, which are utilized practically in the manufacture of the so-called aniline dye-colors.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 415, December 15, 1883

  • The resulting compound is known as aniline, a liquid boiling at 182°.

    An Elementary Study of Chemistry

  • Fritsche in the same year by the distillation of indigo with caustic potash developed a product which he also called aniline, the name being derived from the Portuguese word anil, meaning indigo.

    Forty Centuries of Ink

  • From benzoline, again, we get a liquid called aniline, from which are made so many of our beautiful dyes - mauve, magenta, and violet; and what is still more curious, the bitter almonds, pear - drops, and many other sweets which children like to well, are actually flavoured by essences which come out of coal-tar.

    The Fairy-Land of Science

  • In Germany a substitute has been found in aniline, which is so cheap that within a measurable distance of time no indigo whatever will be bought.

    The Coming Conquest of England

  • Some progress has been made in this direction, but so far the main results are certain degradation-products such as aniline dyes derived from coal tar; salicylic acid; essences of fruits; etc. Still these and many other discoveries of the same nature do not prove that the laboratory of man can compete with the laboratory of the living plant cell.

    Popular Science Monthly Oct, Nov, Dec, 1915 — Volume 86


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  • And he ... pitied the men behind the shaking wall, and all men over the world who had committed themselves to that search for pleasure which makes joy inaccessible. They had chosen frustration for their destiny. Because they desired some ecstasy that would lighten the leaden substance of life they turned to drunkenness, which did no more than jumble reality, steep the earth in aniline dyes, tinge the sunset with magenta.

    - Rebecca West, The Judge

    July 17, 2009

  • Usage note in comment on naphtha.

    October 4, 2017