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The preparation of azulene-substituted benzofurans and isocoumarins was established by two types of intramolecular cyclization reaction of 1-ethynylazulenes. 2-(1-Azulenyl)- and 2,3-bis(1-azulenyl)benzofurans were prepared by the palladium-catalyzed cross-coupling reaction of 1-iodoazulenes with 2-ethynylphenol and that of 1-ethynylazulenes with 2-iodophenol under Sonogashira–Hagihara reaction conditions following the intramolecular nucleophilic addition of the oxygen nucleophile to the presumed 1-arylethynylazulenes. In contrast, 1-(phenylethynyl)azulenes bearing an o-methoxycarbonyl function on the substituted phenyl moiety exhibited intramolecular cyclization either in the presence of trifluoroacetic acid or N-iodosuccinimide (NIS) to afford azulene-substituted isocoumarins and 4-iodoisocoumarins, and the structures were clarified by single-crystal X-ray analysis. The optical properties of these compounds were also investigated by UV/vis spectroscopy and theoretical calculations.
A dehydrogenative oxygenation of C(sp2)H bonds with intramolecular phenolic hydroxy groups has been developed, which provides a straightforward and concise access to structurally diversely benzofurans from ortho‐alkenylphenols. The reaction is catalyzed by palladium on carbon (Pd/C) without any oxidants and sacrificing hydrogen acceptors.