cu·​pel·​la·​tion ˌkyü-pə-ˈlā-shən How to pronounce cupellation (audio)
: refinement (as of gold or silver) in a cupel by exposure to high temperature in a blast of air by which the unwanted metals are oxidized

Examples of cupellation in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The invention of cupellation some 3,000 years later allowed people to separate silver and gold from impure metals, releasing elements like copper, tin and lead, which became partly vaporized. Livia Gershon, Smithsonian Magazine, 17 Aug. 2021 As Rossella Tercatin reports for the Jerusalem Post, the team found that bones at the site started showing traces of pollution about 5,000 years ago, around the time people first began refining metals through a process known as cupellation. Livia Gershon, Smithsonian Magazine, 17 Aug. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cupellation.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1691, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cupellation was circa 1691

Dictionary Entries Near cupellation

Cite this Entry

“Cupellation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jun. 2024.

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