Acid Anhydride Definition in Chemistry

Chemistry Glossary Definition of Acid Anhydride

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An acid anhydride is a nonmetal oxide which reacts with water to form an acidic solution.

In organic chemistry, an acid anhydride is a functional group consisting of two acyl groups joined together by an oxygen atom.

Acid anhydride also refers to compounds containing the acid anhydride functional group.

Acid anhydrides are named from the acids that created them. The "acid" part of the name is replaced with "anhydride." For example, the acid anhydride formed from acetic acid would be acetic anhydride.


  • IUPAC, Compendium of Chemical Terminology, 2nd ed. (the "Gold Book") (2006).
  • Nelson, D. L.; Cox, M. M. (2000). Lehninger, Principles of Biochemistry, 3rd Ed. Worth Publishing: New York. ISBN 1-57259-153-6.
  • Panico R., Powell W.H., Richer J.C., eds. (1993). "Recommendation R-5.7.7". A Guide to IUPAC Nomenclature of Organic Compounds. IUPAC/Blackwell Science. pp. 123–25. ISBN 0-632-03488-2.
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Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Acid Anhydride Definition in Chemistry." ThoughtCo, Aug. 28, 2020, Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. (2020, August 28). Acid Anhydride Definition in Chemistry. Retrieved from Helmenstine, Anne Marie, Ph.D. "Acid Anhydride Definition in Chemistry." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 24, 2023).