Silver is a metallic element with symbol Ag and atomic number 47. The symbol Ag stems from Latin argentum, derived from the Greek ὰργὀς (literally “shiny” or “white”), and ultimately from a Proto-Indo-European language root reconstructed as *h2erǵ-, “grey” or “shining”. A soft, white, lustrous transition metal, it exhibits the highest electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity, and reflectivity of any metal. The metal is found in the Earth’s crust in the pure, free elemental form (“native silver”), as an alloy with gold and other metals, and in minerals such as argentite and chlorargyrite. Most silver is produced as a byproduct of copper, gold, lead, and zinc refining. Silver is more abundant than gold, but it is much less abundant as a native metal. Its purity is typically measured on a per mille basis; a 94%-pure alloy is described as “0.940 fine”.
As one of the seven metals of antiquity, silver has had an enduring role in most human cultures. Silver has long been valued as a precious metal. Silver metal is used in many premodern monetary systems in bullion coins, sometimes alongside gold. Silver is used in numerous applications other than currency, such as solar panels, water filtration, jewelry, ornaments, high-value tableware and utensils (hence the term silverware), and as an investment medium (coins and bullion). Silver is used industrially in electrical contacts and conductors, in specialized mirrors, window coatings, and in catalysis of chemical reactions. Silver compounds are used in photographic film and X-rays. Dilute silver nitrate solutions and other silver compounds are used as disinfectants and microbiocides (oligodynamic effect), added to bandages and wound-dressings, catheters, and other medical instruments.
From Wikipedia: Silver