Gold is a precious metal that’s been inspiring tales and mysteries for thousands of years. There are many well-known facts about this precious metal, but a lot of people still don’t know all the secrets of gold.
Gold came from space. Meteors “delivered” practically all gold on Earth. Nature magazine published a scientific study confirming this fact. As our planet was forming, iron got plunged in its center, creating the planet’s core. One would expect that precious metals would also be drawn to the planet’s “melting middle”, however, the mantle holds about a thousand times more gold than it would had that been the case. This is because of the meteor showers. About 3.9 billion years ago they delivered gold to Earth. For a long time, the origin of this precious metal was one of the secrets of gold.
The secrets of gold
The Sun. The Latin name for gold is aurum. This name is used in the periodic table of elements. Therefore, the chemical symbol for gold is Au. The word came into English and similar languages from the Proto-Germanic word “gulþą”. The Old English word “gelou” means yellow. The Croatian name for gold, zlato, comes from Proto-Slavic word “zolto”.
Noble properties. Gold melts at 1064.42 °C. That is why the temperature of furnaces used to melt gold is higher than 1100 °C. Mostly, it’s around 1200 °C. Gold has many properties considered noble. It conducts heat and electricity. It is easily malleable. Finally, gold never rusts.
Gold as an investment
A secure investment. A safe investment. Gold is considered one of the safest investments. Its value rises in times of economic crisis. Throughout history, gold has proved to be a reliable storage of value. The first coin made entirely out of gold was coined by king Croesus in the first millennium BC. Since then, gold has been the basis of all economy. After the “gold standard” has been dropped, the use of gold as a protection against inflation became more prominent. In the last 100 years, the dollar has lost more than 99 percent of its value due to inflation. However, the value of gold has stayed the same.
Golden ducats. In Europe, and especially in the Mediterranean, the most popular gold coin is the ducat. The first country to implement this kind of coin was Venice in the 13th century. The word ducat means duke. This was the title of the ruler of the Republic of Venice. However, today the word “ducat” is synonymous with a specific kind of gold coin. It’s a coin with an image of Franz Joseph and produced by the Austrian Mint.