Zinc is an essential trace element, present in the organism in a quantity greater than that of any other trace element
with the exception of iron
Zinc alloys have been used for centuries: brass
is undoubtedly the oldest, and artefacts in this alloy have been found in Palestine
dating from 1400
to 1000 BC
Objects containing 87% pure zinc have been dated back to prehistoric Transylvania
. Because of the low boiling point and chemical reactivity of this metal (pure zinc tends to evaporate rather than collect in liquid form), the true nature of this metal element was not recognised by the ancients.