Fun facts about gold

  • Mapungubwe, in the far north of South Africa, was the biggest kingdom on the subcontinent in the 13th century. During site excavations in 1932, the now famous golden rhinoceros, made of gold foil tacked with tiny pins around a wooden core, was recovered. South Africa's highest honour, of which Nelson Mandela was the first recipient, is called the Order of Mapungubwe.

  • Gold can be hammered into sheets so thin that a pile only 2.54cm high would contain more than 200,000 separate sheets.

  • In 1912, the Olympic Committee stopped making 24 karat gold medals. They are now required to be covered in just six grams of gold.

  • The Statue of Liberty's torch is covered with thin sheets of 24 karat gold.

  • Gold is so pliable that it can be made into sewing thread.

  • Elvis Presley owned three cars manufactured by Stutz Motor Company, in which every part that is normally chrome was converted to gold.

  • You can eat gold… but the gold isn't digested and just passes right through the body.