Diethyl ether
Diethyl ether, also known as ethyl ether, simply ether, or ethoxyethane, is an organic compound
Organic compound
An organic compound is any member of a large class of gaseous, liquid, or solid chemical compounds whose molecules contain carbon. For historical reasons discussed below, a few types of carbon-containing compounds such as carbides, carbonates, simple oxides of carbon, and cyanides, as well as the...

 in the ether
Ethers are a class of organic compounds that contain an ether group — an oxygen atom connected to two alkyl or aryl groups — of general formula R–O–R'. A typical example is the solvent and anesthetic diethyl ether, commonly referred to simply as "ether"...

 class with the formula . It is a colorless, highly volatile
Volatility (chemistry)
In chemistry and physics, volatility is the tendency of a substance to vaporize. Volatility is directly related to a substance's vapor pressure. At a given temperature, a substance with higher vapor pressure vaporizes more readily than a substance with a lower vapor pressure.The term is primarily...

 flammable liquid
Flammable liquid
Generally, a flammable liquid is a liquid that can catch fire.In the USA, there is a precise definition of flammable liquid as one with a flash point below 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Less-flammable liquids are defined as combustible liquids...

 with a characteristic odor. It is commonly used as a solvent
A solvent is a liquid, solid, or gas that dissolves another solid, liquid, or gaseous solute, resulting in a solution that is soluble in a certain volume of solvent at a specified temperature...

 and was once used as a general anesthetic.
The compound may have been created by either Jābir ibn Hayyān in the 8th century or Raymundus Lullus
Ramon Llull
Ramon Llull was a Majorcan writer and philosopher, logician and tertiary Franciscan. He wrote the first major work of Catalan literature. Recently-surfaced manuscripts show him to have anticipated by several centuries prominent work on elections theory...

 in 1275, although there is no contemporary evidence of this.