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Platinum

A dense, malleable grey-white metal which is one of the rarest with only a few tonnes mined each year, its rarity makes it highly valuable and its hardness and tarnish resistance make it ideal for use in jewellery. Platinum has required a legal hallmark since 1975, it is marked 950 which means it is composed of 95% platinum together with 5% additional alloy.

It is one of only three Noble Metals in general use. It is tough and exceptionally non-corrosive but became popular relatively late in life, at the beginning of the 20th century, as a jewellery medium.

It was a perfect material for the very geometric designs of the time and its hardness made it perfect to use for claws in which to set stones in the emerging diamond-based designs of so much of the jewellery of the time.

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