How to Identify and Determine the Value of your Silver
Vintage Watchstraps. This page includes a number of examples of British hallmarks that should show you want to look out for when your are trying to read British hallmarks. I hope you have read my page about British hallmarks so you know that you should be looking for all four parts of a hallmark. I have also included a bit of history for some of the companies mentioned that I hope you find interesting. These British hallmarks were struck on items of gold or silver manufactured in the UK. From imported gold and silver items should also have been assayed and hallmarked in a British assay office, but very few were.
See also the definitions page in this guide for additional information on hallmark components. Note at centre of the image at right the four elements of the hallmark. Detailed image of hallmark far right. Locate the assay office. If your item does not have one of the standard fineness marks, either traditional or numerical, then it is probably silver plate or is from another county.
Go no further.
a brief history of the use of date letters in English silver hallmarking system: an which does not require that an assayed item of plate must be dated (see note 1a). Thus when, in the sterling standard was re-instituted for coin of the.
A silver object that is to be sold commercially is, in most countries, stamped with one or more silver hallmarks indicating the purity of the silver, the mark of the manufacturer or silversmith, and other optional markings to indicate date of manufacture and additional information about the piece. In some countries, the testing of silver objects and marking of purity is controlled by a national assayer’s office. Hallmarks are applied with a hammer and punch, a process that leaves sharp edges and spurs of metal.
Therefore, hallmarking is generally done before the piece goes for its final polishing. The hallmark for sterling silver varies from nation to nation, often using distinctive historic symbols, although Dutch and UK Assay offices no longer strike their traditional hallmarks exclusively in their own territories and undertake assay in other countries using marks that are the same as those used domestically.
One of the most highly structured hallmarking systems in the world is that of the United Kingdom, Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland , and Ireland.
British Hallmark Examples
English antique silver (pre) should have either four or five separate maker/ silversmith, the Lion Passant to signify that its English Sterling Silver, Looking at the date letter ‘I’ tells us that this silver dressing case jar lid dates to
The date letter and the traditional fineness marks are no longer compulsory components of the hallmark. However, we believe that the date letter is a very important component of the hallmark, as it is the easiest way to date an item and research has shown that most of our customers still want to see the traditional fineness mark on the hallmark.
Unlike some of the other UK assay offices, we do not charge any extra to apply the two non-compulsory marks. Those only wanting the compulsory marks applied should indicate this on the hallnote. Read more about the other legally recognised marks in the UK, International Convention marks, and Commemorative marks here. Also known as Maker’s Mark.
This is the registered mark of the company or person that submitted the article for hallmarking. It is formed of initials of that person or company inside a shield shape. The shield shape varies, and a minimum of two initials must be included. Every one is unique. When you create your punch with us, you join a register of makers stretching back centuries. Register for your punch here. Sponsor’s Mark.
DATE LETTERS – 1773 TO 2020
These items are not for sale and the descriptions, images and prices are for reference purposes only. A Dutch gilt silver apostle spoon, possibly Rotterdam circa with apostle standing figure terminal, inscribed with crest and ‘Maas Sliujs A. P’, length
(column) in the table below to see a larger view (scroll down for earlier dates): quality as the silver currency (hence the term “sterling” for the silver standard). The Hallmarking Act of brought the remaining 4 British Assay Offices.
It has a typical baluster shape with a swelling out of the body near the foot, the handle is hollow with a opening in the bottom to allow easy handling of both cold and hot drinks. It is unadorned except for the monogrammed letters W. It has a few tiny blemishes on the top rim and the body but nothing major of note, I have tried to photograph this piece well and encourage inquiries to answer any questions you may have.
A stunning sterling teapot with a unique combination of wood and sterling. It features a wooden handle and lid cap that makes the teapot easier to pick up, hold and pour when serving. The teapot is a unique shape with a rippled body, a small spout with a bold,yet small footed base for placement. A beautiful English Hallmarked teapot from a passed era, that would make an effortless, yet timeless gift. Excellent Condition: No dents or repairs minimal surface scratches and tarnish that can be easily polished.
A miniature Russian Silver Icon — marked The icon is pre Russian revolution dating sometime between English hallmarks for Birmingham Attleboro Massachusetts. Features a beautiful cut crystal base with a deep cut geometric flower pattern, and a sterling silver lid decorated with leaf, floral and scroll motifs. Silver Holloware USD.
antique sterling silver apostle spoon
The passage of time and repair work has marred or eliminated marks from many pieces making them harder to identify the precious metal content, the country of manufacturer or the maker. The British hallmark used from to , is a crown, while in Scotland, the hallmark is a thistle. The British only used 18 or 22 karat gold during this time. The karatage is usually the karat number, followed by a c, ct, or carat.
In those days the English government raised taxes on imported gold and silver work, The phrase “sterling” is stamped on many post USA pieces. and in conjunction with other marks or stylistics, they can aid in the dating of jewelry.
Over the next 50 years, Birks expanded by buying up established jewellers across the country. They also took over their rivals in manufacturing until they had a virtual monopoly on the production and sale of sterling silverware in Canada. Birks acquired several more designs from Gorham and other manufacturers later in the century and also designed a few of their own patterns like Tudor and Laurentian.
Birks manufactured their own flatware and some of their hollowware in their factory in Montreal up until the early s when the factory was closed and production was moved offshore. In the early part of the century, the factory employed nearly people. Some of their hollowware was purchased from manufacturers in the UK and the US and sold under the Birks label. Birks sterling marks varied throughout their history which helps us to date their pieces.
In Birks received permission from the London assay office to mark their sterling silver with a date letter that corresponded to the London assay office date letter. They produced a wide range of silver hollowware and flatware. Ellis was taken over by Birks in
Antique Silver Online from J.H. Tee Antiques Ltd.
King Hiero II of Syracuse gave Archimedes the assignment to investigate the purity of a newly commissioned golden wreath, believing silver was added to the gold content. Although the technicalities in this legendary story are most likely based on myth, it does give an early account of fraud with precious metals. The German Crown in a Sun Hallmark.
British silver pieces will normally have the lion passant hallmark (indicating sterling silver) along with an assay mark, a date mark, and.
The marks on the bottom of a piece of silver can be an indication of the age, maker, and origin of the piece. This is a list of American silver marks and solid American silver. Other lists include silver-plated wares and pewter. It will not help you to identify other silver. Four or five small pictorial marks usually indicate England as the country of origin. Queen Victoria faces left.
Queen Elizabeth faces left. Silver was stamped with a lion for London, a thistle for Edinburgh. The harp indicated the piece was made in Dublin. Glasgow silver-smiths used a fish or tree.