Nine noncarious human molars were extracted and stored in saline solution. Three standard occlusal cavities with beveled enamel margins were prepared on each tooth and etched with the etching solutions of three dentinal adhesive systems: (1) 37% phosphoric acid solution, (2) 4.3% oxalic acid and 2.6% aluminum salts solution, and (3) 10% maleic acid solution. Scanning electron microscopic analysis revealed that all the etching solutions affected the enamel surface morphology. The solution of oxalic acid and aluminum salts removed primarily the prism core material and partially the periphery of the prisms, but did not affect the nonbeveled enamel surface. Phosphoric and maleic acids removed both prism core materials and prism periphery; these specimens also showed areas in which no prism morphology could not be detected. These two acids also removed apatite crystals from the prism core of the intact enamel surface.