Silver necklace, Indian, 1850-1925.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A necklace decorated with peacock and flower motifs. Silver has been highly prized in many cultures for centuries for its brilliance and lack of reactivity with water or oxygen, leading to the metal being widely used for jewellery, ornaments and coins. Because of its high electrical conductivity, silver is used in electrical components. Another major usage of silver is in the manufacturing of photographic film, which uses silver halide emulsions.