Antimony: historical information

  • Discoveror: Known since ancient times
  • Place of discovery: not known
  • Date of discovery: unknown
  • Origin of name : from the Greek words "anti + monos" meaning "not alone" (the origin of the symbol Sb comes from the Latin word "stibium").

Antimony was recognized in compounds by the ancients and was known as a metal at the beginning of the 17th century and possibly much earlier. Its most important mineral is stibnite, a mineral which formed the basis of black eye makeup in Biblical times. Antimony was sometimes confused with lead in those times. It seems not to be clear who first recognised antimony as an element but the French chemist Nicolas Lémery conducted much of the earlier studies on antimony chemistry.

Antimony is one of the elements which has an alchemical symbol, (right, {{floatR}}alchemical symbol of antimony{{/floatR}} alchemy is an ancient pursuit concerned with, for instance, the transformation of other metals into gold).

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