It was in the 4th millennium BC that a couple of Egyptian workers made an awesome discovery. A small amount of gold in the soil of a fire pit had melted and been turned into a shimmering and mesmerizing nugget that we all know and love so well.
Since this fateful day, the precious metal has not only been revered but also engulfed by many myths. Gold even came to represent the sun. Today, it is a cult object for some, a lifestyle and investment choice for others, and there is no denying that “gold” still means wealth, status and even authority in our day and age.
Gold has many stories to tell – it has followed many a corpses to the grave; it has been used to purchase objects, favors and other valuable commodities; it has been bait and been a coveted material used as bribery; it has been a motive for pillage, scheming and murder. Gold is an element that everyone on the planet knows.
The word “gold” most likely stems from the Indo-European world “ghel,” which means “bright” or “shining”. The Greek word for gold is “chrysos” can still be found today in many gem names such as chrysocolla and chrysoprase. It is also noteworthy to mention that certain things that are not gold – yet are considered to be precious – are referred to in connection with this element, e.g. “black gold” is petroleum; “white gold” can be marble , salt or porcelain, and “Gold of the Sea” is coral.
Facts about gold
The Latin word for gold is aurum, which is why the chemical symbol for gold is “Au”.
The melting point of gold is 1.065° C. Compared to platinum (1,772° C), for example, it has a very average melting point, which means that it is easier to process.
Pure gold is soft. Therefore, pure gold and gold alloys with a high gold content are suitable for jewelry to a certain extent. The result is jewelry that is vulnerable to scratches. It also bends and deforms easily. Gems cannot be attached to it very securely.
Gold is a heavy metal and therefore has a very high density: 19:32 g/cm3. The density of gold is 19:32 times greater than that of water.
Gold is precious. Works of art by Pablo Picasso are also precious.
Put gold and Picasso together and you have works of art that will positively floor you.
They are extremely expensive, but just about anyone will tell you what a fantastic investment they are.