English silver dating marks
The mark of origin is the Harp Crowned and it appears with a date letter and maker’s mark. Simply learn to recognise those Antique Silver Hallmarks.Learning how to define the origin of a piece of silver, the year made and the silversmith is great fun and also a way of perhaps finding a rare item that was made in a particular year or city.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.Between 17 the crown is often incorporated with the date letter struck on small objects.When the Birmingham Assay Office was established in 1773, largely due to the representations of the great Midlands industrialist, Matthew Boulton, the mark of an anchor was adopted as the town mark.There was a simple reason for this seemingly Draconian behaviour in that the manufacture of silver and gold was allied to the minting of currency.
Since 2015 visually identical UK Hallmarks are being struck in India and Italy by sub-offices of Birmingham & Sheffield Assay Offices respectively: London assay office hallmarks on the back of a waiter, or small square salver.
In that year, a decree by Edward I laid down that silver or gold could not be made or sold unless it was marked by the leopard’s head or The King’s Mark, as it was then known.
This mark became crowned in 1478 and remained crowned until 1821.
Marks indicate it is Britannia gauge silver made by (or for) Paul de Lamerie (taken to or) in London and dated 1732 (it could have been made a year or two earlier than 1732).
Shows the hallmarks for two pieces of English silver (from the workshops of George Adams (1842) and Joseph & Albert Savory (1838)) each with a tally mark added (the letter B on one and a small dot on the other).
The Incorporation of Goldsmiths of the City of Edinburgh was thought to be in the 1490’s and the earliest surviving records date from 1525.