By Ashleigh Paull

What is the name of your element and it's abbreviation?

The name of my element is 'Gold' and it's abbreviation is Au.

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Why did you choose this element? What made you find this element interesting?

I chose this element because I found it cool how it is multi purpose as you can make jewellery with it, you can eat it, etc. The interesting thing I found about gold is that Gold has been discovered on every continent on Earth.

How did this element get it's name? Does it match up to it's abbreviation?

Gold get's it's name as it originates from the old English word 'geolo' meaning yellow. Gold does not match it's abbreviation because Au is from the Latin word 'aurum' meaning gold.

When was it discovered?

Gold was discovered in New South Wales in 1815. However the ancient Egyptians were using gold at least a millennium before the common era.

Who discovered the element?

When Gold was discovered in California, it was by James W. Marshall on January 24, 1848, who saw something shiny in Sutter Creek near Coloma, California.

Although, nobody can be sure who first discovered it.

Many claim the first gold coin was "minted" in what is now Turkey about 600 B.C. There were discovered Egyptian gold pieces dated by the markings from 1400 B.C.

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What does this element look like?

Gold is a yellow, shiny, sparkling metal. It is also dense, soft, shiny, and malleable and ductile.

What are the properties/characteristics of this element? What is it like at room temperature?

Gold, like iron, copper, lead, tin etc. It is a metal. Metals are good conductors of heat and electricity and are almost all solid at room temperature. Gold is heavy - it weighs over nineteen times more than water, and is almost twice as heavy as lead.

Gold at room temperature is in solid state. Just one ounce of gold can be beaten into a sheet that measures roughly 5 meters on a side.

Thin sheets of gold, that are called gold leaf, are used in arts and crafts for gilding.

Why is it important to preserve or to keep creating this element? what is it used for?

We must preserve gold as it is a very rare and precious metal. It is used for many things such as to make jewellery, you can eat it, etc.

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Name one or two things that you found unusual about this element?

I found it unusual how:
  1. Although gold is a heavy, dense metal, it is generally considered non-toxic. Gold metal flakes may be eaten in foods or drinks.
  2. Very few chemicals can attack gold, so that’s why it keeps it shine even when buried for 1000’s of years.