soulmates usa dating site in 2016 - English silver dating marks

These pieces were sold with a 25-30% discount at the factory shop.

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It was Edward I who first passed a statute requiring all silver to be of sterling standard – a purity of 925 parts per thousand – ushering in a testing or assay system that has survived for over 700 years.

In Ireland, silversmiths in Cork, Limerick and beyond simply marked their silver with the word ‘Sterling’ and a maker’s initials.

In 18th and 19th century Scotland more than 30 different silversmithing centres were active from Aberdeen to Wick with each ‘hammerman’ using their own mark.

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I also welcome any photos of signatures or examples. In the future we would like to be able to create a site that will be an inspiration to collectors all over the world.Today there are still offices in Edinburgh, where hallmarking has been regulated since the 15th century, and in Birmingham and Sheffield, where assay offices were established by an Act of Parliament in 1773.Dublin’s assay office has been operating since the middle of the 17th century and silver is still marked there.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 of the maker, a date letter and the place of assay.Since hallmarking began, the leopard’s head has been used in various forms to denote the London Assay Office.The statute made it the responsibility of the Wardens of the Goldsmiths' Guild to mark all items of sterling standard with a leopard's head stamp.

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