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Turpentine facts for kids

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Turpentine (spirit of turpentine, oil of turpentine, wood turpentine) or turps is a solvent and a source of materials for organic synthesis.

Turpentine is a solvent fluid got by distilling resin from live trees, mainly pines. It is a complex mixture of hydrocarbons. As a solvent, turpentine is used for thinning oil-based paints, for producing varnishes, and as a raw material for the chemical industry.

The word turpentine comes from the Greek word τερεβινθίνη terebinthine, the name of a species of tree, the terebinth tree.

It is hazardous. It is dangerous to inhale, and can cause fires. Because of this, white spirit (mineral turps) or other substitutes are often used. They are very different chemically.

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