Solution: Copper, silver, and gold have all been know since ancient times, whereas most of the other metals have not. Can you suggest an explanation?Figure Discovering the elements.

Problem

Copper, silver, and gold have all been know since ancient times, whereas most of the other metals have not. Can you suggest an explanation?

An accessible periodic table can be found here: https://media.pearsoncmg.com/bc/bc_0media_chem/periodictable/table.html. In Ancient times 9 elements were discovered: C, S, Fe, Cu, Ag, Sn, Au, Hg, and Pb.  In the Middle Ages to 1700 6 elements were discovered: P, Zn, As, Sb, Pt, and Bi.  From 1735 to 1843 42 elements were discovered: H, Li, Be, B, N, O, F, Na, Mg, Al, Si, Cl, K, Ca, Ti, V, Cr, Mn, Co, Ni, Se, Br, Sr, Y, Zr, Nb, Mo, Rh, Pd, Cd, Te, I, Ba, Ce, Tb, Er, Ta, W, Os, Ir, Th, U.  From 1843 to 1186 He, Sc, Ga, Ge, Rb, Ru, In, Cs, La, Pr, Nd, Sm, Gd, Dy, Ho, Tm, Yb, Tl were discovered.  From 1894 to 1918 Ne, Ar, Kr, Xe, Eu, Lu, Po, Rn, Ra, Ac, Pa were discovered. From 1923 to 1961 Tc, Pm, Hf, Re, At, Fr, Np, Pu, Am, Cm, Bk, Cf, Es, Fm, Md, No, Lr were discovered.  And from 1965 to the present Rf, Db, Sg, Bh, Hs, Mt, Ds, Rg, Cn, Uut, Fl, Uup, Lv, Uus, Uuo were discovered.


Figure Discovering the elements.


Solution

We’re asked to suggest an explanation as to why Copper, silver, and gold have all been known since ancient times, whereas most of the other metals have not


Recall that Copper (Cu), Silver (Ag) and Gold (Au) are considered as transition metals and were all used as a form of currency in ancient times.  

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