Silver is a naturally occurring element on the periodic table and can be found in natural deposits throughout the world. As such, it was discovered, but not invented, by people.
Evidence of silver use is found going back at least 5,000 years and can be seen in ancient jewelry and tableware. As a naturally occurring element, silver must be mined. It is frequently found in the same areas that lead, copper and gold deposits are found. Silver alloys are used in film photography, electrical circuits and batteries. Silver is an excellent reflector of light, and it has been used for mirrors since ancient times.