Britannia metal

Britannia metal

Britannia metal is a pewter-type alloy favoured for its silvery appearance and smooth surface. The composition is approximately 93% tin, 5% antimony, and 2% copper.

It was first produced ["The New Encyclopædia Britannica, Micropædia" (2002, 15th edition)] in 1769 or 1770, under the name of "Vickers White Metal", by the Sheffield manufacturers Ebenezer Hancock and Richard Jessop.

After the development of electroplating with silver in 1846, Britannia metal was widely used as the base metal for silver plated household goods and cutlery. The abbreviation EPBM on such items denotes Electroplated Britannia Metal. Britannia metal was generally used as a cheaper alternative to electroplated nickel silver (EPNS) which is more durable.

Some authorities and collectors think that it is this "white metal" that sometimes formed a base for early experimentations in mercury and tin or latten metal plating in the 18th and early 19th centuries.

One famous use of Britannia metal (also referred to as Britannium) is to make the Oscar statuettes handed out each year at the Academy Awards. The 8½-pound statuettes are Britannia metal plated with gold. [http://www.oscar.com/legacy/statuette2.html http://www.oscar.com/legacy/statuette2.html] ] The America's Cup is also made of this material.Fact|date=July 2008

Britannia metal should be distinguished from Britannia silver, a high-grade alloy of silver.

ee also

*Nickel silver (German silver)

References


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Britannia metal — Britannia Bri*tan ni*a, n. [From L. Britannia Great Britain.] A white metal alloy of tin, antimony, bismuth, copper, etc. It somewhat resembles silver, and is used for table ware. Called also {Britannia metal}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • britannia metal — n. [also B m ] an alloy consisting chiefly of tin, copper, and antimony, used in making tableware: it resembles pewter but is harder …   English World dictionary

  • Britannia metal — a white alloy of tin, antimony, and copper in varying proportions, sometimes with small amounts of zinc, lead, and bismuth, used for tableware and as an antifriction material. Also, britannia metal. [1810 20] * * * ▪ alloy       alloy composed… …   Universalium

  • Britannia metal — britaniškasis metalas statusas T sritis chemija apibrėžtis 90–92% Sn, 8–9% Sb, 1,8% Cu lydinys. atitikmenys: angl. Britannia metal rus. британский металл …   Chemijos terminų aiškinamasis žodynas

  • Britannia metal — noun Etymology: Britannia, poetic name for Great Britain, from Latin Date: 1817 a silver white alloy largely of tin, antimony, and copper that is similar to pewter …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Britannia metal — noun an alloy similar to pewter • Hypernyms: ↑alloy, ↑metal …   Useful english dictionary

  • britannia metal — noun an alloy of tin with copper, antimony; somewhat like pewter …   Wiktionary

  • Britannia metal — hard white alloy comprised of tin copper and antimony (commonly used to produce tableware) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • Britannia metal — noun a silvery alloy consisting of tin with about 5–15 per cent antimony and usually some copper, lead, or zinc …   English new terms dictionary

  • Britannia metal — Britan′nia met al or britan′nia met al n. mel a white alloy of tin, antimony, and copper, sometimes with small amounts of zinc, lead, and bismuth, used for tableware and as an antifriction material • Etymology: 1810–20 …   From formal English to slang

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