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207.2 +2

[ ? ] Post-Transition Metal:
corrosion-resistant, dense, ductile, and malleable blue-gray transition metal

Lead, is a chemical element. It is a heavy metal, and is abundant in nature. Lead has the symbol Pb (from the latin Plumbum). It's atomic number is 82. Lead is a very corrosion-resistant, dense, ductile, and malleable blue-gray metal that has been used for at least 5,000 years.[1]

Early uses of lead included building materials, pigments for glazing ceramics, and pipes for transporting water. Prior to the early 1900's, uses of lead in the United States were primarily for ammunition, brass, burial vault liners, ceramic glazes, leaded glass and crystal, paints or other protective coatings, pewter, and water lines and pipes. Template:TOC-leftThe advent of the electrical age and communications, which were accelerated by technological developments in World War I, resulted in the addition of bearing metals, cable covering, caulking lead, solders, and type metal to the list of lead uses. With the growth in production of public and private motorized vehicles and the associated use of starting-lighting-ignition (SLI) lead-acid storage batteries and terne metal for gas tanks after World War I, demand for lead increased. Later, radiation shielding in medical analysis and video display equipment and as an additive in gasoline also increased usage.


Long known, mentioned in Exodus. The ancients regarded lead as the father of all metals, but the deity they associated with the substance was Saturn, the ghoulish titan who devoured his own young. The very word "saturnine," in its most specific meaning, applies to an individual whose temperament has become uniformly gloomy, cynical, and taciturn as the results of lead intoxication.

In the rigidly hierarchical world of the ancients, lead was the plebeian metal deemed suitable for a vast variety of everyday uses. . Lead products were, to a certain degree, accessible even to the poorest proletarian. But only the chosen few were at the top of the social totem pole were able to regularly indulge their insatiable craving for lead-containing products.

Lead was a key component in face powders, rouges, and mascaras; the pigment in many paints ("crazy as a painter" was an ancient catch phrase rooted in the demented behavior of lead-poisoned painters); a nifty spermicide for informal birth control; the ideal "cold" metal for use in the manufacture of chastity belts; a sweet and sour condiment popular for seasoning and adulterating food; a wine preservative perfect for stopping fermentation or disguising inferior vintages; the malleable and inexpensive ingredient in pewter cups, plates, pitchers, pots and pans, and other household artifacts; the basic component of lead coins; and a partial ingredient in debased bronze or brass coins as well as counterfeit silver and gold coins.

Most important of all was lead's suitability as inexpensive and reliable piping for the vast

  1. Intro sourced from accessed 4/03/2008