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State whether true or false:
Coins can be made of pure metals.
(A) True
(B) False

Last updated date: 21st Jun 2024
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Hint: Since coins are made with the intention of circulation, they must be made up of constituents that are able to hold up to the wear and tear that circulated coins experience. In other words, the constituents that would be used to make coins should be harder, more durable and must have high resistance to corrosion.

Complete step by step answer:
Coins are small, round and flat pieces of metal that are used mainly as a medium of exchange or currency. They generally have text, images or numerals imprinted on them.
Although the ancient coins are made up of pure metals, all the coins which are intended for circulation in the present times are made from alloys.
By pure metals, we mean those metals which contain nothing but only atoms of a single metallic element. But alloys are homogeneous mixtures or combinations of two or more elements, one of which must be a metal. For example, the pure metal iron consists of only the iron atoms. But steel is an alloy of iron and carbon.
Alloying of two or more metals changes the properties of the metals. Pure metals are very soft and so they cannot be held up to regular use. But alloying them will make them harder and tougher. Pure metals like gold and silver are soft and are easily bendable and stretchable and so it would easily run out of the shape in which it was built.
Some pure metals in their elemental state react with their surrounding environment and undergo oxidation and corrosion until they are no longer usable. So combining them with other metals to form alloys will make them resistant to corrosion and also extend their life.
Because of the above mentioned disadvantages of pure metals, they are not preferable to make coins. For example, the bronze alloy used for making coins today is a combination of 95 percent copper, 4 percent tin and 1 percent zinc.

So, the given statement is false.

Note: Coins must have metal values considerably less than their face values. Face value of a coin is the value of the coin printed on itself by the issuing authority. If the value of the metal used in making the coins is higher than face value, then smelters will melt coins for the scrap value of the metal. Hence, economically wise also, it is not preferable to use only pure metals to make coins.