Gold Wire, Gold Leaf, etc. Gold wire was first made in Italy, about A.D. 1350. An ounce of gold is sufficient to gild a silver wire above thirteen hundred miles in Length; and such is its tenacity that a wire the one-eighteenth part of an inch thick will bear the weight of five hundred pounds without breaking. A single grain of gold may be extended into a leaf of fifty-six square inches, and gold leaf can be reduced to the 800,000th part of an inch, and gilding to the 10,000,000th part.