Silver dating letters
It is a form of consumer protection, whose origin goes back almost 1000 years.
There are so many different hallmarks found on British silver that to know all of them would be impossible.
|HOW TO READ ENGLISH/BRITISH STERLING SILVER MARKS| |DUTY MARKS| |LEOPARD'S HEAD| |LONDON MARKS| |WOMEN SILVERSMITHS| |PSEUDO HALLMARKS| |IMPORT MARKS| |CONTEMPORARY MARKS| |JOURNEYMAN MARKS| |HERALDRY & FAMILY CRESTS| |OLD ADVERTISEMENTS| |FACTORIES & SHOPS: OLD IMAGES| |ARTICLES ON ENGLISH SILVER| The hallmarking of British sterling silver is based on a combination of marks that makes possible the identification of origin and age of each piece.
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If you can't see any of these 5 marks, the chances are that the item is either not British or is silverplated.
If you can find one of these marks, then you know that the item is British silver and you can move onto stage 2.
The King's head duty mark was first struck in 1784.
In that year and the following year, the head faced left and was debossed rather than embossed.
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.Note that dublin is unique in using the same mark for the town mark and the standard mark. However, the crowned harp is often seen with another mark called the Hibernia which is similar to the Brittania Silver Mark of a seated lady.This mark is sometimes mistook for the standard mark but it was in fact a special duty mark, used only in Dublin.It is also important to note that each town has a different series of letters, starting on a different year.That means that not only is the font and shield different depending on the town, but also the letter.