I told you that if I were to make you a sculpture, the medium I would choose is metal.
It is strong, and pliable under only extreme conditions.

I asked "What is your objective?", and you reply was aloof, yet endearing.
You said that revealing that would break one of the "The 48 Laws of Power".

What would happen if I said, "I care about you"?
Would you flee? Would that be too close to removing your shroud?

I would be a liar if I said I wasn't drawn to you.

I just worry that your steel-like exterior will cut me like a knife.


- To one of those aloof boys

Adoringly yours,
Victoria Palmer

In chemistry, metals are the majority of the known elements (even if the seven metalloids are not counted as metals). The known metals are (from http://chemicalelements.com/):

The metalloids are: boron, silicon, germanium, arsenic, antimony, tellurium and polonium

Blacksmiths are interested in the malleable metals (copper, iron, etc.), while automobile engine manufacturers are interested in lightweight yet high-impact-resistant metals (aluminum, titanium, etc.). The metalloids (especially silicon) are often used as semiconductors, which is the foundation of all modern computing equipment. Osmium and iridium are known for their extreme specific gravity (a cubic foot of either weighs over 1400 pounds). Lead is rather infamous from the extensive studies of alchemy in days of old; more recently it is used for common plumbing pipes. Platinum, silver and gold are 'precious metals' because of their relative rarity and pleasing appearance. Gold is also used in computing equipment for contacts between 'pluggable' parts because of it's good conductivity.

In short, metals are a significant defining quality of this physical world. Whether for swords in battle, for nutrition in the form of vitamins, or protective casing surrounding a computer's innards, metals add a lot to our lives every day.

A metal is also, in astronomy and astrophysics, a term for any element that is not hydrogen or helium. Since the universe is still made up of around 99% of these two elements, anything heavier is grouped together by astrophysicists as "Metals". Even the small amount of metals found in a star can greatly change the dynamics of its evolution.

Also, very little of what is called "metals" are actually what a chemist, or even a layman, would call a metal. The transition metals like chromium, titanium and iron form only late in the development of a star, while heavier metals, such as Gold, Lead or Mercury, need a supernova to form. Most of the metals in a star are Carbon, Nitrogen, Oxygen, Neon and Silicon, with a smattering of other elements. I am sure that most chemists would shake their heads at Neon being called a metal, but nomenclature often does not make sense.

Met"al [F. m'etal, L. metallum metal, mine, Gr. mine; cf. Gr. to search after. Cf. Mettle, Medal.]

1. Chem.

An elementary substance, as sodium, calcium, or copper, whose oxide or hydroxide has basic rather than acid properties, as contrasted with the nonmetals, or metalloids. No sharp line can be drawn between the metals and nonmetals, and certain elements partake of both acid and basic qualities, as chromium, manganese, bismuth, etc.

⇒ Popularly, the name is applied to certain hard, fusible metals, as gold, silver, copper, iron, tin, lead, zinc, nickel, etc., and also to the mixed metals, or metallic alloys, as brass, bronze, steel, bell metal, etc.

2.

Ore from which a metal is derived; -- so called by miners.

Raymond.

3.

A mine from which ores are taken.

[Obs.]

Slaves . . . and persons condemned to metals. Jer. Taylor.

4.

The substance of which anything is made; material; hence, constitutional disposition; character; temper.

Not till God make men of some other metal than earth. Shak.

5.

Courage; spirit; mettle. See Mettle.

Shak.

⇒ The allusion is to the temper of the metal of a sword blade.

Skeat.

6.

The broken stone used in macadamizing roads and ballasting railroads.

7.

The effective power or caliber of guns carried by a vessel of war.

8.

Glass in a state of fusion.

Knight.

9. pl.

The rails of a railroad.

[Eng.]

Base metal Chem., any one of the metals, as iron, lead, etc., which are readily tarnished or oxidized, in contrast with the noble metals. In general, a metal of small value, as compared with gold or silver. -- Fusible metal Metal., a very fusible alloy, usually consisting of bismuth with lead, tin, or cadmium. -- Heavy metals Chem., the metallic elements not included in the groups of the alkalies, alkaline earths, or the earths; specifically, the heavy metals, as gold, mercury, platinum, lead, silver, etc. -- Light metals Chem., the metallic elements of the alkali and alkaline earth groups, as sodium, lithium, calcium, magnesium, etc.; also, sometimes, the metals of the earths, as aluminium. -- Muntz metal, an alloy for sheathing and other purposes, consisting of about sixty per cent of copper, and forty of zinc. Sometimes a little lead is added. It is named from the inventor. -- Prince's metal Old Chem., an alloy resembling brass, consisting of three parts of copper to one of zinc; -- also called Prince Rupert's metal.

 

© Webster 1913.


Met"al, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Metaled (? ∨ ?) or Metalled; p. pr. & vb. n. Metaling or Metalling.]

To cover with metal; as, to metal a ship's bottom; to metal a road.

 

© Webster 1913.

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