An alloy of gold and silver, used by the ancients; now specifically a natural alloy with between 20 and 50 per cent silver.
German silver plate.
Origin of electrum
Middle English from Latin ēlectrumamberfrom Greek ēlektron
American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
From Latinelectrum, from Ancient Greek ἤλεκτρον (ēlektron).
Electrum Sentence Examples
The sun was associated with gold, the moon with silver, Jupiter with electrum, Saturn with lead, Venus with copper, and so on, while the continued influence of astrological motives is to be seen in the association of quicksilver, upon its discovery at a comparatively late period, with Mercury, because of its changeable character as a solid and a liquid.
Subsequently electrum (an alloy of gold and silver) disappeared as a specific metal, and tin was ascribed to Jupiter instead, the sign of mercury becoming common to the metal and the planet.
According to Herodotus, the first mint was probably that established by Gyges in Lydia towards the end of the 8th century B.C. for the coining of gold, silver and electrum, an 1 Lenormant, La Monnaie dans l'antiquite', i.
The name is derived from the word electrica, first used by William Gilbert (1544-1603) in his epoch-making treatise De magnete, magneticisque corporibus, et de magno magnete tellure, published in 1600, 1 to denote substances which possess a similar property to amber (= electrum, from iiXecrpov) of attracting light objects when rubbed.
The oldest known coins are the electrum coins of the earlier Mermnads (Madden, Coins of the Jews, pp. 19-21), stamped on one side with a lion's head or the figure of a king with bow and quiver; these were replaced by Croesus with a coinage of pure gold and silver.