Of all the valuable metals, silver remains one the most well-known, and has been recognized for its role in monetary systems for centuries. There is a steady demand for silver, which helps make it a popular investment. But how much do you really know about the metal? Check out these interesting facts:
- The words for “silver” and “money” are the same in fourteen different languages.
- Silver has long been associated with the moon, along with several lunar goddesses in a variety of cultures. Because of this, alchemists referred to the metal by the name Lunar.
- Silver is the most reflective element, able to reflect 95 percent of the visible light spectrum. This property makes silver ideal in the manufacture of high-end mirrors, solar cells, telescopes, microscopes, and photographic film.
- The word “silver” comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “seolfor.” No English word rhymes with silver.
- It’s estimated that there is 17 times more silver in the world than there is gold. About two-thirds of the silver mined across the world is a byproduct of mining for lead, copper, and zinc.
- Silver has antibacterial properties, which has led to an assortment of medicinal applications over the years (including the prevention of infection during World War I). Even better, bacteria do not develop an immunity to silver like they do to many manufactured antibiotics. One of the most common current medicinal uses is in the treatment of burn victims.
- Being a highly ductile metal, just one ounce of silver can be drawn into a wire measuring 8,000 feet long. A grain of silver (measuring about 65 mg) can be pressed into a sheet that’s 150 times thinner than an average sheet of paper.
- Some people who practice homeopathy drink colloidal silver for a variety of health complaints. However, over-consumption can result in a bluish hue to your skin.
- The saying “born with a silver spoon in his/her mouth” is commonly interpreted to mean that a child was born into wealth. But it’s origins came from feeding children with actual silver spoons because of the metal’s germ-killing properties. People of ancient civilizations also stored water, wine, and vinegar in silver bottles for the same reason.
- In some ancient cultures, silver was more valuable than gold. In modern society, the value of gold is quite a bit more than that of silver.
- Silver has been used in the weaponry of stories and legends for years. For example, the Lone Ranger rode a horse named Silver and shot silver bullets out of his gun, while silver bullets are a staple weapon in werewolf lore.
Silver has a pretty interesting, and sometimes strange, history. And there’s no telling how many more uses we will develop for the metal in the future. For fans of the strange, you might enjoy adding the Yeager 1 oz Poured Silver Skull to your collection.
What other strange facts about silver are in your wheelhouse of knowledge?