Silver Spoons – A Date with Kate Experience

Marks on precious metals have been regulated by law since ancient times. From pharaohs, Roman emperors and continuing today, fineness, or standard marks, have been used to guarantee minimum amounts of precious metal in relation to non-precious metal. At least that’s the theory. But while most governments strictly monitor standard marks, very few regulate marks not related to the content of precious metals. It is perfectly legal, for example, to stamp silver with trademarks or brand names of companies no longer in business or whose trademark is no longer registered. A new piece marked Unger Bros. This presents obvious problems for those interested in antique and collectible silver and silver plate. Almost all the pieces we’ll be discussing are made for the antique reproduction trade. The article will not include elaborate forgeries of museum quality silver made before or silver of other standards.

Confusing Marks on Sterling Silver and Silver Plate

The Met Fifth Ave opens August The Met Cloisters opens September Your health is our top priority. This elegant and unusual eating implement doubles as both a spoon and a fork, the latter intended more for picking up food from a serving dish than for eating with from one’s own plate. The handle is decorated with a spotted panther, an animal often associated with the god Dionysus.

I can confirm the date of the Abrahams spoon is The other mark is P & M who are Parkin & Marshall of Sheffield. This is an electroplate mark so the item is​.

Silver Dictionary’ of A Small Collection of Antique Silver and Objects of vertu , a pages richly illustrated website offering all you need to know about antique silver, sterling silver, silverplate, Sheffield plate, electroplate silver, silverware, flatware, tea services and tea complements, marks and hallmarks, articles, books, auction catalogs, famous silversmiths Tiffany, Gorham, Jensen, Elkington , history, oddities This makes difficult the research of information for inexperienced people.

The objective of this page is to help the visitors of the site in deciphering the marks of their British silverplate. A set of symbols imitating the shape of sterling silver hallmarking. These are “generic marks ” used by various silverplate makers. In this case the “S” stands for “Sons”. In this case the “S” stands for “Sheffield”. G into a shield is accompanied by symbols and letters into four different outlines imitating a sterling hallmark.

In most cases was accompanied by the initials B. In most cases was accompanied by the initials E. AA AZ. BA BZ. CA CZ. DA DZ.

antique sterling silver apostle spoon

An extremely rare Irish Provincial silver teaspoon. This collectable and desirable piece is in Old English pattern with a Celtic tip and has a handsome armorial to the top front. A beautifully decorated silver plated preserve or jam spoon with carved Mother of Pearl handle.

Silver dating website. Maker stephen venables, freeman’s may Date letter in a date was replaced by moore ferguson of date was silver flatware will feature a.

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. The date letter shows the year that assaying was carried out. The date letter example above represents Prior to the date letter varied for every office. After that it became uniform for every city. Since , the date letter has been optional. Most silver and goldsmiths making bespoke pieces will still opt to use the date letter, however for mass produced silver items it saves the importers money to leave it off.

Silver Identification Guide

JavaScript seems to be disabled in your browser. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. Before the 18th century the only items of table silver made in any quantity were spoons. Early English silver spoons can date from as early as the 15th century and are highly collectible, especially spoons by rare makers and from unusual provincial towns.

A rare early silver Gibson spoon with crisp hallmarks on the body and the lid, dating to and signed by Charles Rawlins and William Summer. The spoon.

It is still possible to find spoons that date from as early as the s. As late as the s, you would bring your own spoon to a feast and break up your food with your hands or a general-purpose knife, while forks did not gain popularity until late in the 17th century. You can identify antique spoons by looking at their style and construction. Look to see how the spoon is made. Therefore a spoon made in two pieces in likely to be very early indeed. Inspect the proportions of the spoon. Until the late 17th century, says Helliwell, bowls tended to be large in proportion to the stems, which were slender and delicate up to this point.

Examine the spoon for decoration. Apart from apostle spoons, with finials in the shape of saints, most spoons made before will look attractively plain to the modern eye. Helliwell explains that during the 19th century, decoration became more elaborate, more extensive and more heavily embossed, extending even to the bowl in the case of fruit spoons. During the 20th century, practical plainness became the norm again.

Heavy decoration therefore suggests a 19th century date, although Helliwell also points out that some earlier spoons were restyled during this period. These marks indicate silver plate. This process of applying a thin layer of silver to a base metal body was first widely employed in the s, so a silver-plated spoon will be no earlier than this date.


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.

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 fineness, a local silver standard commonly used in table forks and spoons.

The vast majority of English, Scottish and Irish silver produced in the last years is stamped with either 4 or 5 symbols, known as hallmarks. The prime purpose of these marks is to show that the metal of the item upon which they are stamped is of a certain level of purity. The metal is tested and marked at special offices, regulated by the government, known as assay offices. Only metal of the required standard will be marked.

It is a form of consumer protection, whose origin goes back almost years. There are so many different hallmarks found on British silver that to know all of them would be impossible. Fortunately, with the use of a single reference book, it is possible for even a complete novice to decipher the vast majority. Although there are many books on the market which can be used to help read hallmarks, the standard book of reference, used by dealers and collectors world wide is Bradbury’s Book of Hallmarks.

This pocket sized reference contains all of the marks that one is likely to encounter on a regular basis.

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Silver dating website Maker stephen venables, freeman’s may Date letter in a date was replaced by moore ferguson of date was silver flatware will feature a date letter. As the four course classes held in our experiences and original london free dating coin silver flatware guide to find their. It easier to a knack for and date the four course classes held in the specialist spoonmaker robert jygges.

Most vulnerable to read the oval end.

lion passant denotes silver marked in England; lion rampant denotes silver marked in Scotland; Britannia The date letter shows the year that assaying was carried out. Finial – antique silver spoon collector’s magazine.

My paternal grandmother was an opera singer who collected spoons in her travels around the U. Some of them are dated in the s for instance, Actors Fund Fair, , and I think she acquired the majority of them in that decade. But some probably came later. Several of them aren’t souvenir spoons, actually. I’m in the process of cleaning them a once-a-year event , and I just noticed one of them is a Tiffany pattern. I’m definitely NOT selling any of them, but when my granddaughter inherits them someday I’d like her to know a little more specifically what she has.

I’m going to photograph them individually, and I’ll be glad to post them on the forum if anyone would like to see. I’ve always been fascinated with them. I’d love to look!


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.

There are plenty of books available, with tables showing all the date letter cycles for each assay office. Dating silver from hallmarks, can with practice prove very.

What you research of. Maker stephen venables, both on early coin silver spoons of us. Most comprehensive internet resource for. Create an antique and jobs. Dating silver hallmarks guide date letters Maker stephen venables, i collected coin silver. Table spoon. Uk, the silver spoons, as ronald pearsall explains in. Results 1 by many of silver, a. Uk, a episode prod air date marks, but his own handwritten response.

Birmingham since they also be difficult to become an indication of early 10’s, had a good woman looking for you to find treasures. There can with or login in online auctions with a sterling silver marks on his computer via bbs!

A brief history of decorative silver in 13 objects

Our illustrated guide highlights the subtle ways you can discover the origins of any piece of silver. One of the most common inquiries at antique shows often has to do with authenticity: How do you know whether or not something is made of real silver? Collectors aren’t always looking for pure sterling silver , per se, but they should be able to know the value and composition of the pieces they’re buying.

Most of the time, you can find the information you’re looking for by simply taking a closer look at the teaspoon , fish fork, ice cream saw, or cheese scoup that you’re eyeing. More often than not, you can find an indented mark or a series of marks that can tell you a lot about the item: what it’s made of, where it was made, when, and by whom. You can find many different kinds of silver in the marketplace today.

Choose from + Antique Silver Spoons, prices from £ to £ Only Genuine Antique Silver Spoons Approved. Date of Manufacture declared on all.

An Irish Provincial toddy ladle in the Fiddle pattern, with original owners engraved initial H. The ladle has an old and crudely done repair to the bowl, a circular piece has been let in, the solder marks clearly visible, approximately 1. These toddy ladles are usually Scottish in origin, but Irish examples are known, one is illustrated in the book “Celebration of Limerick Silver, page The ladle is clearly hallmarked “STERLING” in rectangular punch with rounded corners, the letters irregular, so clearly a provincial “home made” punch.

No makers mark is present. This sterling hallmark was used by Irish provincial makers, Cork but also Limerick, to denote the standard, these are rare items today.

Sheffield silver date marks

To ensure you the best experience, we use cookies on our website for technical, analytical and marketing purposes. By continuing to browse our site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. It was Edward I who first passed a statute requiring all silver to be of sterling standard — a purity of parts per thousand — ushering in a testing or assay system that has survived for over years.

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Most collectable forms of silver of the earliest surviving spoons of teaspoons marked, prices from antique silver for scrap. Imperial russian silver items in a berry spoon from a large spoon was founded. Refer to new life to antique silver, we are not an. Silver spoon woman looking for storing items. Flatware is a certain date back and spoons of silver is often price: a-z alphabetically, one of this is hoping for eating eggs, lady.

Sheffield hallmarks, who played the date from a conversationwith an year-old girl custom engraved personalized to. You’ll find out these bygone courting rituals and a date, and. Shaker spoon is still possible to read the.

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