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Lead is a chemical element with atomic symbol Pb and atomic number 82. Lead is a soft and malleable poor metal, also considered to be one of the heavy metals. Lead tarnishes to a dull grayish color when exposed to air. It has a shiny chrome-silver luster when melted into a liquid. Lead may also be used in construction, weapons, and is commonly mistaken for graphite when people use the term pencil lead, although in ancient times lead was commonly used. Its high density makes it fit for many applications like radiation shielding, ammunition (now losing out to uranium and tungsten), etc.

A new theory suggests that Beethoven died from lead poisoning instead of mercury poisoning.[citation needed]

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