The first discoverer of antimony is unknown. It was first recognized in ancient times but was not scientifically studied until the French chemist Nicolas Lémery published his findings in 1707. Lémery is therefore associated with the earliest antimony research.
The first written acknowledgement of antimony is found in an Egyptian papyrus from 16th century B.C. In ancient times, antimony was used in pottery or crushed down to a powder and used as eye makeup. During medieval times, antimony was used medically as a laxative. Modern science typically uses alloys of antimony, meaning it is mixed with other metals. These alloys can be found in batteries, semiconductors, paints and other materials.