Native metal

As a solid is referred to in mineralogy the presence of pure chemical elements in nature. The most common examples are precious metals such as copper, silver and gold and the platinum metals.

Many non-metals such as carbon (as graphite or diamond ), sulfur, oxygen, nitrogen and the noble gases, and even the highly reactive fluorine occur in nature in elemental form. For them, the expression is unusual because it is usually only applied to metals.

It is often dignified not declined (example: native gold instead of solid gold ).


So far about 30 elements in nature are detected occurring in pure form (as of 2010) and were obtained from the International Mineralogical Association (IMA ) recognized as a distinct minerals.

  • Metals, dignified occurring and recognized by the IMA: aluminum, lead, cadmium, chromium, iron, gold, indium, iridium, copper, nickel, osmium, palladium, platinum, mercury, rhodium, ruthenium, silver, zinc, tin
  • Semi- metals: antimony, arsenic, bismuth ( bismuth ), selenium, silicon, tellurium
  • Non-metals: carbon ( diamond, graphite, lonsdaleite ), sulfur

The systematics of minerals assigns this next alloys, intermetallic compounds and carbides in the class of " elements ". About ten elements can be found on Earth in geologically relevant extent, including the above-mentioned metals copper, silver and gold. Since solid -occurring elements are relatively easily accessible, they have been obtained and processed in ancient mining.

Figurative meaning

In everyday language, the term pure usually means that something tried and tested way is stylish, elegant and pure and good. Less commonly, the term in the sense of calm, quiet, comfortable uses. Especially in North Germany there is another originating from the Low German language, rather negative meaning. There is dignified used also in the sense of strange, bizarre, weird or incomprehensible.

2013 has been declared in the initiated by Langenscheidt Publishing choice for youth word of the year and part with the words super, cool, casual solid 3rd place.