A soft, malleable, silver-white metallic chemical element; symbol Yb. Atomic number 70; atomic weight 173.04; melting point 819°C; boiling point about 1,194°C; specific gravity about 7.0. It has several radioactive isotopes.
From Ytterby, the name of the Swedish village where the mineral ytterbite (the source of ytterbium) was originally found. It was discovered by the Swiss chemist Jean-Charles Galissard de Marignac in 1878.