Primary alcohol

Primary alcohol

A primary alcohol is an alcohol which has the hydroxyl group connected to a primary carbon atom. It can also be defined as a molecule containing a “–CH2OH” group.[1] In contrast, a secondary alcohol has a formula “–CHROH” and a tertiary alcohol has a formula “–CR2OH”, where “R” indicates a carbon-containing group.

Examples of primary alcohols include ethanol and butanol.

Some sources include methanol as a primary alcohol,[2][3] including the 1911 edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica,[4] but this interpretation is less common in modern texts.

See also


  1. ^ "Definition: primary alcohol from Online Medical Dictionary". Retrieved 2007-11-22. 
  2. ^ "an introduction to alcohols". Retrieved 2007-11-22. 
  3. ^ Albert S. Tarendash (2001). Let's review: chemistry, the physical setting. Boston, Mass: Barron's. p. 161.  
  4. ^ "Alcohols - LoveToKnow 1911". Retrieved 2007-11-22.