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tarnished knife
MFA# 02.211


Tarnish details on inlays
MFA# 11.10166

A discoloration or dulling of a metal surface due Oxidation or other chemical reactions. Atmospheric pollutants, such as sulfur oxides, react with Silver to form a black Silver sulfide tarnish. Addition of Indium to the silver alloy will increase its tarnish resistance (Lewis 1993). Copper, Brass, and Aluminum are also susceptible to tarnishing.

Synonyms and Related Terms

silver tarnish

Additional Images

Resources and Citations

  • Ralph Mayer, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques, Harper and Row Publishers, New York, 1969 (also 1945 printing)
  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982

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