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The ancient history of Non-ferrous metals
- Apr 11, 2018 -

Non-ferrous metals were the first metals used by humans for metallurgy. Gold, silver and copper existed in their native crystalline yet metallic form. These crystals, though rare, are enough to attract the attention of humans. Less susceptible to oxygen than most other metals, they can be found even in weathered outcroppings. Copper was the first metal to be forged; it was soft enough to be fashioned into various objects by cold forging and could be melted in a crucible. Gold, silver and copper replaced some of the functions of other resources, such as wood and stone, owing to their ability to be shaped into various forms for different uses. Due to their rarity, these gold, silver and copper artifacts were treated as luxury items and handled with great care. The use of copper also heralded the transition from the Stone Age to the Copper Age. The Bronze Age, which succeeded the Copper Age, was again heralded by the invention of bronze, an alloy of copper with the non-ferrous metal tin.

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