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Botanical Names Styrax benzoin Dryander STYRACACEAE
Common Name Benzion; Bum Benjamin; Gum Benzoin;
Key_Name Benzion
Identenifying Characteristics  
Image of herb.
Stem Tree to 7 m tall; with rough, tomentose branches;
Leaves Simple, alternate, smooth above, toemetose beneath, poteoles are rounded striated, tometose, vary short, and channeled, elliptic to orbicular, entire or slightly dentate.
Flowers are on one side, in compound, axillary racemes, nearly the length of the leaves; white, several, in drooping clusters on 2 cm long pedicels, Petals nu
Fruit Is a globose drupe, containing 1 or nuts, angular, concave on one side and convex on the other
Taste sweetish, balsamic, somewhat acrid.
Distribution Native to south-east Asia, especially Sumatra; in mixed forests close to rivers.
Parts Used Gum
Constituents Balsamic acids (to 60%) comprising esters of cinnamic (H9H9O2) and Benzoic acids (18%); Benzoresinal; Benzoldehyde; Styrol; Vanillin; and several related substances. The combined actions predominantly antiseptic.
Solvents Alcohol; Caustic potash; ether;
Therapeutic Action Antiseptic,Carminative,Diuretic,Expectorant
Medical Uses Antiseptic Genito-urinary; Bronchitis Chronic, Expectorant Mildly; Skin poltices, plasters, directly in tincture; Mouth wash diluted; Mucous membranes, stimulating;
Contra Indications May cause extra load
Formulas Formula 119 Cucumber oil sunburn; coolingFormula 120 Night cream
non_med Preservative, suitable for various pharmaceutical and cosmetic preparations; Incense and aromatic products;
Cultivation Wild and cultivated commercially
Sister Plants  
History It was first noted by Ibn Batuta fallowing Garcia de Orta?s visit to Sumatra in 1325 to 1349, and he called it Java Frankincense or Laban Jawi in Arabic. The Arabic name was altered to Banjawi, Benzui, Bensoin, and Benjamin over subsequent centuries. The re3sin was imported to Europe fallowing Garcia de Orta?s description of the drug (1563), and in the list of taxes levied at Worms in 1582 it was listed as Asa dulcis (Sweet Asa) - a name retained untill the 1850s. By 1800 the atiseptic properties of Benzoin ahad been fully recognized and both Simple and Compound Tinctures of Benzoin were regularly employed as preservatives in a wide rnge of medicinal and cosmetic preparations, and the resin is still used today in herbal preparations. 1608 Bezoic asid played an important role in the development of chemistry, isolated from resin of Styrax tree. Used in foo, Medicine and Cosmetics.
Harvest he resin is obtained by tapping 7 to 10 year old trees and scraping off the whitish exudation from the bark. Trees can be so treated for up to20 years before they die.
Comments Eliminated chiefly by the mucous membranes.
Reference Dr. Neil McKinney
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