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Gold

gold | ˈgōld

noun

A yellow, metallic element that occurs naturally in pure form and is used especially in jewelry

Because pure gold is too soft to resist prolonged handling, it is usually alloyed with other metals to make it hard enough for use in jewelry, goldware, or coinage.

The most common gold alloy colors are yellow, rose, white, and green. In yellow gold, the gold is alloyed with silver, copper, and a little zinc to produce the various shades of yellow. In white gold, the gold is alloyed with nickel, copper, and zinc. In rose gold, sometimes called pink gold, the gold is alloyed with copper and silver. In green gold, sometimes called electrum, the gold is alloyed with silver and sometimes copper. In all of these combinations, the alloy changes from yellow to the desired color, as the proportions of other metals are increased.

Alloys of gold with silver or copper are used to make gold coins and goldware. Alloys with platinum or palladium are also used in jewelry.

The content of gold alloys is expressed in "karats". 14-karat gold alloy is 58.5 percent gold and 24-karat gold is pure.

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