* Mercury is a member of the transition metals family:
____________________________________________________________________ MERCURY / Hg / 80 A silvery, liquid, highly unreactive metal. Its symbol, Hg, is from the Latin "hydrargyrum (liquid silver). Seven isotopes are found in nature: Hg<202/80> / 30% Hg<200/80> / 23% Hg<199/80> / 17% Hg<201/80> / 13% Hg<198/80> / 10% Hg<204/80> / 7% Hg<196/80> / 0.1% All are stable. atomic weight: 200.59 abundance: 68th density: 13.546 gm/cc melting point: -39 C boiling point: 357 C valence: 1 <2> ____________________________________________________________________
The "Hg+" ion was once referred to as "mercurous" while the "Hg++" ion was referred to as "mercuric", but they are now known as "mercury(I)" and "mercury(II)" respectively.
Mercury, also known as quicksilver, long fascinated alchemists. Their fascination could be hazardous when they decided to synthesize potions from it, since it is very toxic. It was once fairly widely used in tanning, felt production, thermometers, and so on, but due to its toxicity its use is now much more limited, being employed in some electrical switches and as an industrial catalyst. Total production is a few thousand tonnes a year, mostly produced from the ore cinnibar (HgS).