David Wilke, Wearing the Royal Stuart tartan became a regular sight for anyone keeping an eye on the monarchy. Prince Philip adopted it and the Princes Albert and Alfred had their portraits painted wearing their kilts. At times it seemed like the Queen was single-handedly keeping the tartan manufacturers in business through her distribution of Highland style gifts to family, friends and Royal retainers. Along with the tartan came the traditional functional jewelry used to secure plaid wraps and kilts. Thought to ward off evil spirits, these were widely distributed as love tokens. Much of the pebble jewelry produced was unsigned. These marks are helpful in dating a piece but do little, if anything, to identify the maker.
SCOTTISH SILVER MARKS
The statute made it date responsibility of the Wardens of the Goldsmiths’ Guild to mark all items of scottish standard with a leopard’s head stamp. Today there date still offices in Edinburgh, where hallmarking has information regulated since the 15th century, and in Birmingham and Sheffield, where assay offices were established by an Act of Parliament in. The leopard’s head silver date, which has been used in various forms as the symbol of the London Assay Office since hallmarking began.
Most British and Irish silver carries a number of stamps indicating not just the standard or purity mark typically the lion passant but also the initials letters check this out maker, a date letter and the place of assay. The Edinburgh mark is a three-turreted castle to which a thistle was added from until when a lion rampant replace the thistle ; the silver for Sheffield was a letters until when it was replaced by a rosette, while the auctions for silver made in Birmingham is an anchor.
A date letter is sometime used, but probably to give the impression of a complete set of hallmarks as one could find on silver marked in London. Between
A typical set of antique British silver hallmarks showing left to right ; 1. Standard Mark, 2. City Mark, 3. Date Letter, 4. Duty Mark and 5. Maker’s Mark This particular set of marks tells us that this item was made of Sterling, in the city of London, in the year , during the reign of King George III, and by the silversmith Thomas Wallis. Establish that it has one of the Silver Standard Marks , if not it is likely silverplate or from a different country.
Locate and identify the City Mark. Note whether it has a sovereign’s head Duty Mark – or not. The sovereign’s head, or lack thereof, will narrow the date range.
Scottish Silver Earrings E1363
Date responded: The subsequent Silver Swan report – Exercise Silver Swan Overall Exercise report April – was circulated.
Scotland is well-known for his clans, the fearless militaries going to the battlefield preceded by their pipers and the unspoiled nature of the Highlands with lochs, rivers, salmon and stags. Deciphering marks on silver items is a fascinating pastime for silver collectors, but mostly they have no idea of the background of these marks and the reason why specific punches were chosen as town mark or standard mark.
The scope of this article is to trace back the origin of Scottish silver punches to the earliest times and to bring the reader up-to-date on this subject. Hallmarks were for most part, freely adopted by individuals or clans at some point in the Middle Ages and in many cases it is impossible to define the meaning of it, if any.
In particular cases however symbols and emblems of official seals were the source of town marks and were subsequently integrated in city coat of arms. As explained hereafter some punches are even linked to Scottish legends, which is not surprising as Scotland has an extensive heritage in that field. This thistle mark was used as a national emblem of Scotland. From to present the lion rampant replaces the Thistle as the standard mark.
According to legend Scottish soldiers were forewarned of Viking invaders by their screams as they were wounded by thistles whilst creeping ashore. Sterling silver was guaranteed in Glasgow with the Lion Rampant mark from till the closure of the assay office in The lion is shown rearing up with three legs stretched out and has been incorporated in the Great Seal of Scotland and symbolises the strength of the Scottish people and their ferociousness in battle.
Lion rampant left Royal coat of arms of Scotland as used before center note 3 Scottish version of the Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom since right. The triple towered castle is a symbol for Edinburgh, the Castle Rock having been fortified since c.
Scottish Silver Overview
The islands have a rich history with Scottish, Irish and Nordic influences reflective in these unique jewelry designs. Spirals are ancient Celtic symbols found in old illuminated manuscripts, on stone carvings and more. Made in Scotland.
Lot of A silver hammered Scottish penny of Alexander III () dating c. Second coinage, long cross and stars type.
English Silver Shilling English version. English Silver Shilling Scottish version. Choose from:. Skip to main content. Email to friends Share on Facebook – opens in a new window or tab Share on Twitter – opens in a new window or tab Share on Pinterest – opens in a new window or tab. Add to Watchlist. People who viewed this item also viewed. English Silver Shilling English version English Silver Shilling Scottish version Picture Information.
Mouse over to Zoom – Click to enlarge. Have one to sell? Sell it yourself.
Exercise Silver Swan: FOI release
Sep 25, – silver and sterling silver markings | date letters chart silver Scottish silver marks: marks and hallmarks of Edinburgh sterling silver Me On A.
By law in the UK, precious metals over a stipulated weight i. A hallmark can only be applied by one of the four UK Assay Offices. More information can be found in this guidance leaflet issued by the British Hallmarking Council. Hallmarks which are applied by member countries of the International Hallmarking Convention are also accepted. If you are considering investing in some precious metal or interested in antiques it is helpful to understand what hallmarks mean.
The different symbols in a hallmark will tell you who made the item, what the standard of metal is, where it was hallmarked and possibly the date when it was hallmarked. The art of hallmarking in the UK has a long history; it dates back years, when a rigorous and very sophisticated system of hallmarking was developed. It is, in fact, the oldest form of consumer protection known in the world.
Hallmarks are proof that the article has been independently tested and stamped. In the UK, these marks can only be applied by an Assay Office. In the past most cities and towns had an office but these days there are only 4 remaining in London, Birmingham, Sheffield and Edinburgh. It is normally 2 or 3 initials in a surrounding shape. This mark can be applied by the maker prior to being sent for hallmarking but it must be present before the official hallmarks can be applied by the Assay Office.
LONDON DATE LETTERS CHART / SILVER HALLMARKS UK
View all Silverware. Trays, Plates and Salvers. Fish Knives, Forks and Servers. View all Teaware.
Three Scottish Silver and Agate Broaches dating to c/ Three beautiful little silver Scottish broaches in silver and ag More. More information. Scottish.
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. It should have the initials within a shield.
The item may also have some commemorative or duty marks.