Cu does not dissolve in HCl but dissolves in nitric acid. Explain why?

Copper dissolves in any oxidising acid like nitric acid. In HCl, chloride ion is reducing and not oxidising. Also, Cu comes under hydrogen which means in a displacement reaction, they will not be able to replace the hydrogen from it. 

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Dissolution of a metal in HCl actually means that the metal has displaced H+ ions and form its own salt. However, copper is unable to displace H sine copper lies below H in electropositive character series.

HNO3 is a strong oxidising agent also. Hence it rather oxidises copper to Cu2+ ions and hence copper dissolves in HNO3.

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