Gold(gld), n. [AS. gold; akin to D. goud, OS. & G. gold, Icel. gull, Sw. & Dan. guld, Goth. gul, Russ. & OSlav. zlato; prob. akin to E. yellow. 49, 234. See Yellow, and cf. Gild, v. t.]
(Chem.) A metallic element of atomic number 79, constituting the most precious metal used as a common commercial medium of exchange. It has a characteristic yellow color, is one of the heaviest substances known (specific gravity 19.32), is soft, and very malleable and ductile. It is quite unalterable by heat (melting point 1064.4 C), moisture, and most corrosive agents, and therefore well suited for its use in coin and jewelry. Symbol Au (Aurum). Atomic weight 196.97.
Native gold contains usually eight to ten per cent of silver, but often much more. As the amount of silver increases, the color becomes whiter and the specific gravity lower. Gold is very widely disseminated, as in the sands of many rivers, but in very small quantity. It usually occurs in quartz veins (gold quartz), in slate and metamorphic rocks, or in sand and alluvial soil, resulting from the disintegration of such rocks. It also occurs associated with other metallic substances, as in auriferous pyrites, and is combined with tellurium in the minerals petzite, calaverite, sylvanite, etc. Pure gold is too soft for ordinary use, and is hardened by alloying with silver and copper, the latter giving a characteristic reddish tinge. [See Carat.] Gold also finds use in gold foil, in the pigment purple of Cassius, and in the chloride, which is used as a toning agent in photography.
2. Money; riches; wealth.
For me, the gold of France did not seduce.Shak.
3. A yellow color, like that of the metal; as, a flower tipped with
4. Figuratively, something precious or pure; as, hearts of
Age of gold. See
Golden age, under Golden. --
Gold dust, etc. See under Dutch, Dust, etc. --
Gold amalgam, a mineral, found in Columbia and California, composed of gold and mercury. --
Gold beater, one whose occupation is to beat gold into gold leaf. --
Gold beater's skin, the prepared outside membrane of the large intestine of the ox, used for separating the leaves of metal during the process of gold-beating. --
(Zol.), any small gold-colored beetle of the family Chrysomelid; -- called also
golden beetle. --
Gold blocking, printing with gold leaf, as upon a book cover, by means of an engraved block.
Gold cloth. See
Cloth of gold, under Cloth. --
Gold Coast, a part of the coast of Guinea, in West Africa. --
(Mining) See Cradle,
n., 7. --
Gold diggings, the places, or region, where gold is found by digging in sand and gravel from which it is separated by washing. --
Gold end, a fragment of broken gold or jewelry. --
Gold-end man. (a) A buyer of old gold or jewelry. (b) A goldsmith's apprentice. (c) An itinerant jeweler. "I know him not: he looks like a gold-end man."
B. Jonson. --
Gold fever, a popular mania for gold hunting. --
Gold field, a region in which are deposits of gold. --
Gold finder. (a) One who finds gold. (b) One who empties privies.
[Obs. & Low]
Gold flower, a composite plant with dry and persistent yellow radiating involucral scales, the Helichrysum Stchas of Southern Europe. There are many South African species of the same genus. --
Gold foil, thin sheets of gold, as used by dentists and others. See Gold leaf. --
(Bot.), buttercups. --
Gold lace, a kind of lace, made of gold thread. --
Gold latten, a thin plate of gold or gilded metal. --
Gold leaf, gold beaten into a film of extreme thinness, and used for gilding, etc. It is much thinner than gold foil. --
(Mining), a gold vein. --
Gold mine, a place where gold is obtained by mining operations, as distinguished from diggings, where it is extracted by washing. Cf.
Gold diggings (above). --
Gold nugget, a lump of gold as found in gold mining or digging; -- called also a
Gold paint. See
Gold shell. --
(Zol.) See under Pheasant. --
Gold plate, a general name for vessels, dishes, cups, spoons, etc., made of gold. --
Gold of pleasure. [Name perhaps translated from Sp.
(Bot.) A plant of the genus Camelina, bearing yellow flowers. C. sativa is sometimes cultivated for the oil of its seeds. --
Gold shell. (a) A composition of powdered gold or gold leaf, ground up with gum water and spread on shells, for artists' use; -- called also
gold paint. (b)
(Zol.) A bivalve shell (Anomia glabra) of the Atlantic coast; -- called also
jingle shell and
silver shell. See Anomia. --
Gold size, a composition used in applying gold leaf. --
Gold solder, a kind of solder, often containing twelve parts of gold, two of silver, and four of copper. --
Gold stick, the colonel of a regiment of English lifeguards, who attends his sovereign on state occasions; -- so called from the gilt rod presented to him by the sovereign when he receives his commission as colonel of the regiment.
Gold thread. (a) A thread formed by twisting flatted gold over a thread of silk, with a wheel and iron bobbins; spun gold.
(Bot.) A small evergreen plant (Coptis trifolia), so called from its fibrous yellow roots. It is common in marshy places in the United States. --
Gold tissue, a tissue fabric interwoven with gold thread. --
Gold tooling, the fixing of gold leaf by a hot tool upon book covers, or the ornamental impression so made. --
Gold washings, places where gold found in gravel is separated from lighter material by washing. --
Gold worm, a glowworm.
Jeweler's gold, an alloy containing three parts of gold to one of copper. --
Mosaic gold. See under Mosaic.
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Tue 10th December 2019