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Story of gold: Interesting facts and figures

Last updated on: May 18, 2012 11:10 IST

Story of gold: Interesting facts and figures

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Gold is one of the world's most sought after metals. The world consumption of gold is about 60 per cent in jewellery and around 40 per cent in investments.

Know more about facts and figures on gold...

1: It is rarer to find a one ounce nugget of gold than a five carat diamond.

Image: The handbag incorporates 18 kt gold, 4,517 diamonds, weighs 381.92 carats and is valued at $3.8 million - setting the world record for the most expensive handbag, according the Guinness World Records.

Data: World Gold Council

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Image: The Mouawad 1001 Nights Diamond Purse
Photographs: Fadi Alassaad/Reuters.

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7.2 million: The number of times that all of the existing gold in the world, turned into 5 micron wire, could wrap around the planet.

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Image: Gold rings are displayed for customers at a jewellery shop in Seoul.
Photographs: Truth Leem/Reuters.
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9: One ounce of pure gold could be hammered into a single sheet nine metres square.

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Image: A customer tries on a gold necklace at a gold shop in Hanoi.
Photographs: Kham/Reuters.
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24: 24 karat gold is the purest form of gold (99.9% or more). Gold coinage has traditionally been 22 karat.

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Image: Five-tael (6.65 ounces or 190 grams) gold bars are seen at a jewellery store in Hong Kong.
Photographs: Bobby Yip/Reuters.
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31.103: The number of grams in a troy ounce of gold.

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Image: An employee holds a gold key during a photo opportunity at a jewellery shop in Seoul.
Photographs: Truth Leem/Reuters.
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37: The temperature of the human body is 37 degrees centigrade. Because of gold's unique conductivity, gold jewellery rapidly matches your body's heat, becoming part of you.

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Image: A woman checks a gold waist belt inside a jewellery shop in Hyderabad.
Photographs: Krishnendu Halder/Reuters.
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49: The 40,000 miners who joined the California Gold Rush in 1849 were called "49ers". Only a very few ever got rich.

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Image: A goldsmith poses with gold bangles in his jewellery shop in Amman's gold market.
Photographs: Ali Jarekji/Reuters.
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50: One ounce of gold can be stretched to a length of 50 miles; the resulting wire would be just five microns wide.

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Image: Gold bars and jewellery are displayed in a shop in Bangkok's Chinatown.
Photographs: Sukree Sukplang/Reuters.
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53: The largest gold coin ever minted, a 2007 Canadian $1,000,000 Maple Leaf is 53cm in diameter.

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Image: Largest gold coin ever minted.

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60: The percentage of gold mined today that becomes jewellery.

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Image: A gold necklace creation for the 3rd Auditions China gold jewellery design competition is displayed in Beijing.
Photographs: Jason Lee/Reuters.
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79: The atomic number of gold, which means there are 79 protons in the nucleus of every atom of gold.

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Image: A gold necklace creation for the 3rd AuDITIONS China gold jewellery design competition.

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90: Over 90 percent of the world's gold has been mined since the California Gold Rush.

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Image: Visitors from mainland China tour a jewellery store displaying a hawk-shaped golden figurine.
Photographs: Bobby Yip/Reuters.
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100: 100 million people worldwide depend on gold mining for their livelihood.

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Image: A temporary tattoo design made of gold leaf is placed on a customer's arm at a jewellery shop in Dubai.
Photographs: Jumana El-Heloueh/Reuters.
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200: Julius Caesar gave two hundred gold coins to each of his soldiers from the spoils of war in defeating Gaul.

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Image: A woman displays gold for sale at a shop in Hanoi.
Photographs: Kham/Reuters.

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394: The percentage increase in the price of gold from Dec 2000 to October 2010.

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Image: A worker scoops gold shots at Japanese jewellery brand, Ginza Tanaka's original equipment manufacturer (OEM) factory in the Chiba prefecture, east of Tokyo.
Photographs: Yuriko Nakao/Reuters.
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400: The number of troy ounces in a "London Good Delivery Bar".

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Image: Gold necklace chains are manufactured at Japanese jewellery brand, Ginza Tanaka's original equipment manufacturer (OEM) factory in the Chiba prefecture, east of Tokyo.
Photographs: Yuriko Nakao/Reuters.
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750: The number of parts per thousand of pure gold in 18 carat gold.

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Image: customer wears a jewellery set at a jewellery shop in a shopping district in Beirut.
Photographs: Cynthia Karam/Reuters.
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1064: Gold melts at 1064 degrees centigrade.

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Image: A salesman displays gold jewellery for the camera at a showroom in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad.
Photographs: Krishnendu Halder/Reuters.
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2316: The largest ever true gold nugget weighted 2316 troy ounces when found at Moliagul in Australia in 1869. It was called the "Welcome Stranger".

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Image: Highly pure molten gold for use in electronic devices is poured at a Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo factory in Kanagawa prefecture.


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2808: Gold boils at 2808 degrees centigrade.

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Image: A staff member from Japanese jewellery brand Ginza Tanaka demonstrates drinking out of a solid gold beer tankard at its unveiling ceremony in Tokyo.
Photographs: Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters.
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4600: Fort Knox holds 4,600 tonnes of gold.

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Image: A gold enamel and diamond presentation watch, most probably made circa 1880 for King Ludwig II of Bavaria.

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6200: The US Federal Reserve holds 6,200 tonnes of gold.

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Image: An employee of a jewellery shop holds a gold pig.
Photographs: Jo Yong-Hak/Reuters.

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171300: This is the total number of tonnes of gold mined since the beginning of civilisation.

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Image: A gold replica of a pine tree displayed at a jewellery shop.
Photographs: Reuters.
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15,000: Even at only 10 parts of gold per quadrillion, the world's oceans are estimated to hold up to 15,000 tonnes of gold.

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Image: Gold souvenirs are displayed at jewellery shop.
Photographs: Majed Jaber/Reuters.
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250: The world's largest gold bar has a mass of 250 kg.



Image: A gold statue of a lion is displayed at a jewellery shop in Hong Kong.
Photographs: Tyrone Siu/Reuters.
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