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Platinum history


#1

The Platinum Group International web page & also in their other
make the statement: “Dating back to 700 BC, when the
ancient Egyptians mastered the techniques of processing
platinum” Does anyone know Where the historical documentation is
for the statement? I have been looking and have come up blank!
Do they actually claim that the Egyptians were capable of
melting or refining platinum. I deal with several historians and
one of the first question that I got was, “where is an example
of Egyptian platinum work!” Can anyone give me some help?

Mark Chapman

@Mark_Chapman


#2

I didn’t think platinum had even been discovered back then and I
have never seen any platinum work dated prior to this century.


#3

Platinum was used in pre-Columbian metalwork. The metalworkers
at the time couldn’t melt platinum but mixed granules of the
metal with molten gold and silver, a process called sintering.

Steven Brixner - Jewelry Designer - San Diego CA USA
mailto:@Steven_Brixner4
http://home.att.net/~brixner


#4

Danial There is an interesting story about the Conquistadors in
South America throwing TONS of a grey clay like substance out of
the gold and silver mines not knowing what they were heaving over
the side …it was supposed to be platinum wether this is true or
apocryphal I can not say but I have heard it from several sources
never from an accepted “original” source though my$.002 worth Ron


#5

The oldest documented find using platinum was jewelry belonging
to the Pharaohs of the Eighteenth Dynasty, 1551-1306 B.C. These
pieces were made of an alloy of gold and platinum. The gold taken
from the nubien mines had various quantities of platinum mixed
naturally within the ore. It may not have been a concious efford
to use platinum, but by using the natural alloy as found,
platinum jewelry was created. A more famous discovery was the
document casket of the great priestess Shepenupet, daughter of
the king of Thebes. In 720 B.C. One side side of the casket has
gold hyroglyphics, the other side silver ones. One of the letters
is made of platinum.

Hope that helps
Have a platinum day
PLATINUM GUILD INTERNATIONAL USA
Jurgen J. Maerz
Manager of Technical Education
JA Certified Master Bench Jeweler
http://www.pgi-platinum-tech.com


#6
Danial There is an interesting story about the Conquistadors in
South America throwing TONS of a grey clay like substance out of
the gold and silver mines not knowing what they were heaving over
the side ...

Source: The Illustrated Science and Invention Encyclopedia.
(comes with the Brittanica) Vol 13, pg 1786.

Platinium and Palladium are the most abundant of the six
metals.* Platinium was the earliest known, having been
discovered by the Spaniards in the South American silver mines
about 1550. The metal was referred to as ‘platina del Pinto’
(silver like metal from the Pinto river) but was recognized as
being different from true silver because it could not be melted
(silver has a melting point of 960 deg C; platinium 1773.5 deg
C). It also caused difficulties for the Spaniards, as its
density was close to that of gold, and when gold plated it was
virtually indistinguishable from the solid metal. The
counterfieting was only brought under control by dumping all
stocks of platinium in the sea and forbidding its import into
Spain. …

*the six memebers of the platinium group are rhodium (Rh),
ruthenium (Ru), palladium (Pd), osmium (Os), iridium (Ir) and
platinium (Pt).

Kelvin Mok (klmok@shaw.wave.ca)

Home: (780) 463-4099 | Home FAX: (780) 430-7120


#7

I have read in a National Goegraphic magazine that spanish
conquistidores, while panning for gold would find platinum. They
would throw it back thinking it was gold that wasn’t ripe. Bob