The first consisted of beating it with a hammer into very thin sheets which was possible because of the gold's softness. In various biblical passages words are mentioned that are explained as synonyms of gold: segor (Job ); paz (Ps. Scholars do not agree as to the identification of most of these places but in all probability they include the countries in which gold mines were located in the biblical period: Egypt, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, and India.The sheets were used for, among other things, gilding, and also for making gold wire: "They hammered out sheets of gold and cut threads…" (Ex. The second method consisted of melting the gold and then casting it (Ex. In the process of melting, the gold was also refined; refined gold, which was necessary for certain Chron. Among the places cited is the "land of *Havilah" (Gen.mishkal), from which the term *shekel is apparently derived.Weighing the silver was replaced by standard units of weight, which became *coins ; later the coins were counted, as, for example, "I herewith give your brother 1,000 pieces of silver" (Gen. Silver was also used for making vessels for the Tabernacle and the Temple.At the time of the Exodus from Egypt, the Israelite women borrowed from their neighbors "objects of silver, and gold, and clothing" (Ex. Aaron broke off golden earrings to make the golden calf (ibid. The fullest descriptions of the use of gold are found in the accounts of the building of the Tabernacle in the desert and of Solomon's Temple. Gold vessels of all kinds denoted wealth and nobility and were also important in ritual. The shields of Solomon's guard were made of gold (ibid.In the Tabernacle, gold leaf and gold casts were used, for which the gold was contributed by the Israelites: "And these are the gifts that you shall accept from them: gold, silver, and copper" (Ex. At the same time, the principal idols were made of gold and silver and the prophets inveighed against the worship of these graven images (Isa. The wealth and prestige of silver and gold in the form of property and of idols were used as symbols by the prophets: "Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them…" (Zeph. Wealth and gifts of splendor were associated with gold: the Queen of Sheba brought Solomon "… ), and when Ahasuerus made a great banquet for the nobility of his court, he served them from "golden goblets" (Esth. The main minerals in which silver appears in nature are natural silver and silver sulfides.
These metals have been uncovered in excavations in Ereẓ Israel in the form of vessels and slag.); while Proverbs () describes the refining of gold and silver in a furnace.Ezekiel compares Israel with the process of refining metals: "The house of Israel has become dross unto Me; all of them, silver and bronze and tin and iron and lead in the furnace, have become dross" (Ezek. The prophet was apparently well acquainted with the technical process of refining and smelting silver, and describes how silver is extracted from its ores by means of bellows, leaving slag behind.in the clay ground" where Temple vessels were produced ( Kings ).Utensils for smelting are mentioned mainly as metaphors – "But you the Lord took and brought out of Egypt, that iron blast furnace" (Deut. Isaiah speaks of refining silver in a furnace (Isa.It was a symbol of wealth and position as in the description of the palace of Ahasuerus "…silver rings and marble pillars, and also couches of gold and silver…" (Esth. When "all the kings of the earth" came to hear Solomon, they brought him gifts of gold and silver ( Kings ).–12), which scholars locate either in southeast Sudan, northwest Ethiopia, or in the southern Sinai Peninsula.The location of Sheba ( Kings 10:6–10) is also disputed (see *Sabea ); some scholars place it in Ethiopia and others consider it the name of one of the regions or tribes in southern Arabia.Gold was a symbol of wealth and position and served as capital but not as a means of payment.Silver served as currency, but gold bullion as payment is mentioned only once in the Bible: "So David paid Ornan 600 shekels of gold by weight for the site" ( 4:1), i.e., gold is valuable as property while silver is a means of payment. Solomon obtained gold for the Temple and his palace from the booty taken in King David's wars ( Kings ).