How Was Silver Named?

silver-named Credit: Christopher Pillitz/The Image Bank/Getty Images

The name for silver comes from the Anglo-Saxon word siolfur, which means silver. Its symbol is Ag, which comes from the Latin word for silver, argentum. Silver has been known since antiquity.

The element silver has an atomic number of 47 and is part of the Coinage Metal group (group 11) on the periodic table. It is believed that humans have had the ability to separate silver from lead since at least 3,000 B.C. Silver can be found in ores in the United States, Mexico and Peru. While not as expensive as metals such as gold, silver is still prized for its white metallic shine. Because of this, silver is often used to create jewelry.