October 23, 2019

From pirates to California miners, people everywhere and from all walks of life are crazy about gold. Perhaps this obsession is owed to its dazzling color, or unique qualities, or simply to its inherent rarity. Whatever it is about gold, it has captured the hearts, minds, and motivations of generations. This adorning, decorative, useful, and iconic element is pretty amazing. So, here is our collection of fun facts about one of the worlds’ favorite shiny things!

10 Interesting facts about gold:

  1. Most pieces of gold come in small amounts- perhaps formed into the shape of a tiny wedding band or a necklace chain. But there is one hunk of gold that would make any number seem minuscule. The world’s largest gold bar weighs 250Kgs which equates to about 551 pounds. This hefty bar is valued at nine million dollars, and it is now on display at Toi Gold Museum in Japan.
  2. Excluding Antarctica, gold has been discovered on every continent of the planet. You may recall the gold rush of North America. But by the time of the 49ers, gold was no new phenomenon. The beautiful element has been treasured by every major ancient and modern civilization across the world. In fact, the only ones who are left out of this love for gold are the South Pole penguins- and all they really want is to stay warm.
  3. Ever find yourself so crazy about gold, you feel as though you could even eat it? Well, good news- you can! Gold is actually edible. But don’t go too crazy with the gold diet. It does not possess any nutritional or taste value. It is only considered biologically inert, which means that it can be digested without being absorbed or interacting with your body. Gold is most often consumed as decoration on desserts when one wants to eat the world’s fanciest cupcakes.
  4. Ever wondered the value of a gold medalists’ bling? Believe it or not, this emblem of achievement is not solid gold. They are composed of only about 1.34 percent of gold. And though they have a gold color, regulations require that gold medals contain 550 grams of silver and only 6 grams of gold. Yet, despite these small amounts of gold, these medals are worth 500 dollars each!
  5. Gold seems common enough. But if all of the world’s gold that has ever been mined were collected, it would fill three Olympic-sized swimming pools: a combined 157,000 metric tons.
  6. Gold remains a revered and wondrous treasure in our world. And when compared to an element like steel, we are reminded of its rarity. More steel is poured in a single hour than the entire amount of mined gold since the start of recorded history.
  7. Gold is an out-of-this-world kind of element. Scientists have discovered that several precious metals, including gold, were delivered via impacting meteorites. Upon observing four billion-year-old rocks, researchers have determined that meteorites enriched the Earth’s surface with gold
  8. A karat (not to be confused with the root vegetable, carrot) is a unit of purity. And the karat number will determine the amount of gold in a particular piece. It is measured on a scale from eight to 24 in increments of two, with the higher number representing greater purity. However, almost nothing is pure gold or, 24 karats with jewelry topping out at 22 karats. That’s because typically, when crafting gold jewelry, the gold must be mixed with another metal, such as copper or silver to make it usable. This is due to gold’s exceptional malleability. In fact, one could even scratch pure gold with a fingernail.
  9. While many civilizations and cultures celebrate their love for gold, it is South Africa that can claim their fame in gold. Nearly half of the world’s mined gold hails from the city of Witwatersrand, the gold capital of the world.
  10. Though South Africa can boast in its abundance of gold, it is the US that holds the most valuable legal tender coin. This one million dollar US coin weighs in at 1,000kg, is 99.99 percent pure gold. Unfortunately, this coin is likely inaccessible to the average coin-collector as it is worth an impressive 45 million dollars.
It is no question that gold is uniquely precious. Even before we knew that is was space-born or edible, or exceptionally rare, humans have maintained an infatuation for it. And there seems to be no end in sight for our obsession. Gold continues to be a valuable investment. If you have bullion or scrap jewelry you would like to sell, make sure that you do so in partnership with a trusted source. Briggs and Coops has served Redlands and the surrounding area since 1935 with dependable expertise. And today, we look forward to assisting you as you buy and sell coins, stamps, bullion, and jewelry. Stop by today!
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