The cetyl ester is spermaceti, and the myricyl ester is largely present in beeswax.
Tallow candles as a substitute for whale-oil had been introduced, and the British market was closed by a duty of £r8 a ton on oil; a bounty offered by the Massachusetts legislature (£5 on white and £ 3 on yellow or brown spermaceti, and £2 on whale-oil per ton) was of slight assistance.
The most important whale-oil is sperm or spermaceti oil, yielded by the sperm-whales.
With lowering of the temperature stearin, accompanied with a small proportion of spermaceti, separates from the oil, and a little under the freezingpoint nearly the whole of these constituents may be crystallized out.
Spermaceti is a comparatively unimportant article of commerce; and of Chinese wax small quantities only are imported, as the home consumption takes up the bulk of the wax for the manufacture of candles, polishes and sizes.