ASCAS Association of Small Collectors of Antique Silver        newsletter # 69 FEBRUARY 2010     SITE MAP
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A new article for ASCAS website

lighter in the form of a up tied parcel
"Postnikov" presents:

Russian Cigarette Lighters English version

The first known lighters were invented in the 16th century and were nothing other than converted flintlock pistols that used gunpowder. One of the first "real" lighters was invented by the German chemist Johann Wolfgang Döbereiner in the year 1823 and was called "Döbereiner Lamp". This lighter worked by a reaction of hydrogen to a platinum sponge, which gave a great amount of heat. This construction was very large and highly dangerous. Production ceased by the end of the 19th century.
The first version of a wick lighter came on the market in 1880 and the spark to ignite the wick was obtained by a piece of pyrite.....

click here English version

New members

Welcome to new ASCAS members:  

Michael Bathrick - USA
Lisa Burns - USA
Michael Carter - USA
Charles Delicata - Malta
Alessandro De Peppo - Italy
Mehdi Gee - England UK
Alice H. Esbenshade - USA
David Harris - USA
Jeffrey Herman - USA
Bill Jackman - England UK
Barbara Jensen-Seymour - USA
Fiona Kenny - Canada
Carolyn Meacham - USA
Betsy Packard - USA
Luigi Speziale - Canada
Nancy Stuckwisch - USA
Penny Wilson - USA
Jacinta Zogg - New Zealand
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Members' Window # 69

Pair of Cauldron Silver Salts, London 1872
Robert Massart presents:

Three Centuries of Cauldron Salts English version

At the beginning of the Middle Ages Anglo-Saxons started to develop table manners in old England. The table setting for a guest consisted of a trencher, a pointed knife and a spoon.
Trenchers were made of hard bread (later of wood) and eaten as part of the meal, given to the poor, or tossed to dogs. Changing habits and new practices resulted in a rich array of different kinds of hollowware and flatware. Whereas knife and spoon were already in use, the fork appeared only at the beginning of the 16th century in Italy.....
click here English version 

Mail to ASCAS: e-mail

Philippe Dupont writes:
...I have a French silver 18th century plate bearing on the bottom a set of figures of which I'm unable to understand the meaning (possibly an ancient weight's measure).
The plate's diameter is 28 cm. and its weight is 876 grams.
Any information will be highly appreciated.
Très cordialement.
Philippe Dupont.
The figures are a later addition (19th-20th century) and refer to common weight measures:
- the "M" identifies the "marc" (1 marc = 8 onces)
- the "O" identifies the "once" (ounce) (1 once = 576 grains)
- the "G" identifies the "grain".
The weight of these measures is slightly different according to the Region. Assuming 30,59 grams per once the weight of the plate was 887,50 grams (3 marcs, 5 onces, 7 1/2 grains).
The hallmarks correspond to: Dijon 1759-1760 (G), silversmith Mathieu Brunot, active for 50 years, from 1732 to 1782.
Christophe Ginter

Jessica Lovett writes:
...Long ago, my great grandmother had a silver cross. We had several pictures of her wearing it. Her name was Florence Jessie Sims Reed. My grandmother had been allowed to wear it a few times. Unfortunately, no one knows what has happened to the cross since my great grandmother passed away in Wales in 1945.
We found an old letter that had described the cross as if it was of some significance, and while researching the family tree thought we should track the meaning of the figures on the back of the cross. On the back of the cross, it looked like there were several images punched into the metal.
The first square had the letters TJS...or FJS it is really hard to tell from the handwriting. Then there were a series of 3 punched marks: an Anchor, a lion and a small "b". From your site it looks like this description best matches Birmingham 1901???? Can you verify if that sounds accurate???
But I still have no Idea what the TJS or FJS in the first square stands for..... if it is FJS.... could it be her initials...Florence Jessie Sims ??????
I also found your site very interesting due to my family history... Florence Jessie Sims was married to Ralph Newbury Reed. He was the son of William Bateman Reed. William Bateman Reed was the son of Thomas Reed and Matilda Bateman. Matilda Bateman was the Daughter of William and Ann Bateman. Could there be any connection to the Bateman and Reed Silversmiths???
I am very anxious for your reply.
Jessica Lovett
A small "b" was used in 1799 and 1876 but in both cases the hallmark was accompanied by the "duty mark" in the shape of the "King's or Queen's head". The duty mark isn't quoted in your document and the only compatible date is 1901.
The maker’s mark TJS belongs to Thomas James Skelton, Vyse Street, Birmingham. Skelton was recorded as jeweller (he registered his mark also in Chester Assay Office) and is reasonable to think that the cross was made short before the date of hallmarking.
I have no information about links between Bateman and Reed (by the way, William Bateman I was the son of Jonathan and Ann Bateman while William Bateman II was the son of William Bateman I).
I'm unable to supply further information about the maker or the object (moreover without an image of it).
Any further suggestion or correction by ASCAS members will be welcome.
Giorgio Busetto

Jim Nord writes:
...I have a silver ladle from Sweden (cat's paw) that has a Date mark of T4 (1849?) and a makers mark of AW.
The item is 43 centimeters in length (silver bowl/ladle is 16 centimeters; black handle with white bead on top is 27 centimeters).
On the outside of the silver ladle are etched two sets of cursive initials.
One set is 5 millimeters high and appears to be E C L
The second set is 8 millimeters high and appears to be K L D
I am attaching photos of the item along with some of my uncle's complete collection which was donated to the city museum in Soderhamn Sweden. It is my desire to donate this item back to my Uncle Helge Nord's collection in the Soderhamn Museum.
I am interested in any information to better understand the history of this item... Maker, Date, City/Town where it was made, identifying the Script Initials on the outside of the ladle, etc.
Can someone help me in my research?
Jim Nord
I trust in ASCAS members to answer your question
Giorgio Busetto

Carmelo Bruno Bruni writes:
...I am researching information about the marks of this vesta case. I identified the town mark (London), duty mark (Queen Victoria) and date letter (G=1882).
I'm unable to identify the other marks (F inside a circle and maker's mark J.E). Thanks for your help.
The J.E mark refers to Joseph Ettlinger partner of Triefus & Ettlinger, 103 Rue du Temple, Paris. The "F" identifies an imported item.
Giorgio Busetto

Joao Garcia Branco writes:
...I live in Portugal and I purchased a Sterling Silver Sugar Caster. However, I don't recognize the Marks.
Can you please help me identify the marks of this piece?
Kind regards
Your caster was presumably made in the U.S., but I'm unable to identify the maker.
I trust in the help of ASCAS members.
Giorgio Busetto

Philippe Cocriamont writes:
...Can someone tell me how old those spoons are, and does somebody know who the silversmith is? The spoons have all one hallmark, a bird walking to the right. I researched everywhere, even in the Silvermuseum Sterckshof in Antwerpen: nobody can help me. It is a mystery.
The spoons have different owner marks, and were bought in different shops, although all in Ghent (Belgium).
Thanks for your help.
Philippe Cocriamont
Spoons and fork of "dog-nose" shape (read further information below).
A new challenge for our experts on Belgian/Flemish silver.
Giorgio Busetto

Andrew Brasch writes:
...Dear Giorgio, I recently purchased this beautiful silver tray but I am a little confused with the silver mark. I recognise the Austro-Hungarian Diana head but I can't locate the "pitcher" next to it.
I checked it, it is not from Montpellier.
If you want, place it on the monthly Newsletter.
Your help is appreciated, I always enjoy all the comments in the Newsletter
Andrew Brasch
The "pitcher" is the figural maker's mark of Eduard Friedman, active in Vienna from 1881 to 1919.
Giorgio Busetto

Nancy Stuckwisch writes:
...I was wondering if I could get some help identifying a set of marks. A photo is attached. The item is a large silver oval tray with a neoclassical ribbon/swag border connecting to 4 cameos. A detailed photo of ribbon/swag/cameo is also attached.
The decorative elements have a Swedish - Gustavian feel, but the double eagle makes me think I am completely on the wrong track.
I would be deeply grateful for any assistance.
Many thanks,
Your item is a "Hanau silver" made in Germany at the end of the 19th c/ beginning 20th c.
In ASCAS website you can find articles dealing with this matter at and
I'm unable to identify the maker.
Giorgio Busetto

Adriaan ter Meulen writes:
...This epergne was purchased in Rye, East Sussex, UK from an antique dealer.
My wife had been looking for one as she was taking lessons in flower arranging. This antique dealer found one and I believe we paid about 20 Pound Sterling for it.
This was in the 1986 to 1990 period. There are no markings on it and as the copper base material is visible in a few spots, it is obviously plated. The plating seems primitive as in a few areas drop-like streaks are visible, suggesting that the silver is thicker in those areas.
I would be pleased to learn more about it.
There are photos attached of the epergne. It is 29 cm high.
Thank you for your help.
Adriaan ter Meulen
I believe that without any mark isn't possible to trace the origin of your epergne (or posy holder).
I publish these images, but I'm highly doubtful that satisfactory answers to this question will be forthcoming.
Giorgio Busetto

Meagan (Bee) O'Hara writes:
...Hello, and thank you in advance for any help or assistance you may be able to offer me. I have stumbled across a gorgeous pendant, and though my education as a gemmologist is priceless to me, I am unable to determine the correct origin/person/etc of the maker's mark.
I have included a few pictures some taken through my microscope.
The pendant features a 1/2 nude woman with detail that is impeccable. There are 3 pigeon's blood rubies (all bezel set one of which is set into the bail), 2 opals (both bezel set), 29 hand cut diamonds (all VVS1-SI1 ranging on color from D-G), and a fresh water pearl drop at the bottom.
It is stamped "Sterling" and also with an "H" that has the numbers "7" and "3" - the 7 in the top area of the H and the 3 in the lower area.
The H with the 7 and 3 I have assumed means this piece was made circa 1873.
I am curious to know if this is what I have years ago seen referred to as a "date ladder"? I assume this pendant's age in part because each of the 29 diamonds are hand cut, and no two of them are cut to the same exact specifications.
(I know without a shadow of a doubt that this pendant isn't from 1973). I may be wrong, yet I could have sworn that Nouveau (which this seems to stylistically fit to perfection) started around 1890. Can you please help me?
Any information you could offer me about this piece would be much appreciated.
I do not feel that I can accurately appraise the piece with so little knowledge of its creation.
Thank you, again.
Meagan (Bee) O'Hara
Any information will be welcome.
Giorgio Busetto

H. Dinerstein writes:
...I am attaching an image of a 2-handled cup and hallmark. I cannot trace the mark. Perhaps you could help.
Yours sincerely
H. Dinerstein
The mark is totally unknown to me. The help of ASCAS members is needed.
Giorgio Busetto

Helen Eyre writes:
...I’ve been trying to research a silver apostle spoon that an old lady left to me and quite by accident found a picture of a similar spoon on your website The hallmarks on my spoon are almost identical to the one you describe as a Dutch import of 1892 – lion, letter R, letter F etc.
I wonder if you can tell me anything more about it? I’ve attached a picture – not very good I’m afraid!
Helen Eyre
My web page is now updated with further information about the spoon:
The English import marks refers to London, 1892, sponsor's mark of Lewis Lewis (mark entered in 1887).
The origin of this firm refers to Hyman Lewis and Benjamin Lewis (jewellers and silversmiths) trading in Brighton , Sussex, as Lewis & Son. Their partnership was dissolved in 1849 and the business was continued by Benjamin Lewis.
After the death of Benjamin Lewis the trade continued as Lewis & Son, gold and silversmiths, dealers and importers of antique plate, etc. From 1887 the business was managed by Barrow Lewis, Lewis Lewis and Herbert Hyman Lewis. Lewis Lewis died in 1908.
This is the mark of my spoon
Giorgio Busetto

Replies to questions

Jan & Tony Spicer receive this reply about their Russian centerpiece 
(see December 2009 Newsletter)
'Postnikov' writes:
Here is the answer for the request of Jan & Tony Spicer:
This is one of the many total fakes on the market. The object is plain fantasy and there are no similar exemplars existing in Russia history.
The round stamp (kokoshnik with dot on the left) should be the regional confirming stamp of Moscow 1899-1908 for small parts. The other mark should be the master mark of the silversmith, unfortunately his name is unknown, working in the year 1744 (!) and the 84 should be the silver content (875/1000), in this form never used. An obligatory assay master is totally missing. All the marks are totally senseless and wrong/non-existing. The whole object is fantasy, the style and bad quality typical for the countless Polish forgeries. Mostly the parts are not silver or silver with very low content.
Hope this helps
Kind Regards


In this column we present a page obtained from makers' brochures, books, auction catalogs, advertising or whatever other printed paper, related to silver, that may be of interest for ASCAS members.
The images will be published at a "low resolution" level and for private and personal use only
catalog P. Steghens, Au Nègre, c. 1925  
This month ASCAS presents a page of an ancient catalog edited c. 1925 by


19 Boulevard St Denis, Paris

catalog P. Steghens, Au Nègre, c. 1925


In this column we present an abstract from a page of the "What is? Silver Dictionary" 
courtesy of home page
dog-nose or wavy-end spoon



Dog-nose or wavy-end is a spoon having a flat stem widening towards the terminal which then narrows to a rounded point. This shape resembles to a dog's head viewed from above.
Usually it has a long rat-tail to the reverse of the bowl, occasionally decorated.
This spoon is similar to the "Trifid spoon" with the two notches eliminated.
This pattern was used from 1695c. to 1715c., coinciding with the period when Britannia Standard (95.8% pure) was used, hence the spoons produced at this time will carry "Britannia" hallmarks......


In this column we present marks, information and history of silversmiths and silver manufacturers.
This column is published under the kind permission of Giorgio Busetto's website home page
B WMJS  RD into a shield mark, William, Michael & John Barnard & Sons with Robert Dubock, London 1900


Possibly the oldest manufacturing silversmith in the world, the origin of this business having been established by Anthony Nelme c. 1680. Francis Nelme succeeded the business on the death of his father in 1722 and continued until 1739 when Thomas Whipham took over the business. On his death in 1756 his son Thomas Whipham jr took into partnership Charles Wright. Thomas retired in 1775 and the business was continued by Charles Wright. The business was amalgamated by Henry Chawner in 1786....



In this column we present books, new or ancient, dealing with silver in all its aspects (history, marks, oddities...). This isn't a "book review" but only a fair presentation of some useful "tools" that anyone may have in the shelf of his bookcase.
ASCAS members are invited to contribute to this column
(click to enlarge images)
The "book on my shelf" of this month presents:
Johanna Gehrlein
(Cutlery in Roses Pattern)
ISBN # 978-3-9813273-0-4
Rosen-Bestecke: by Johanna Gehrlein book
To where the love tends - there rise flowers.
A short while ago, just before X-mass, a monographic work on cutlery with "Roses" pattern was published by Johanna Gehrlein.
For quick information look:
This monographic work is also a kind of "love story" - story started by seeing a sugar spoon in rose pattern in the window of a main shop in Frankfort.
So far so good. Every one of us started once to be a novice silver lover. Some collect a little bit; some also be interested to get more knowledge, and some start to differ details as well.
I had always the feeling of mine, to be detail oriented. But this past half year, more involved in the community of silver lovers, I've met three outstanding researchers, I like to name: Prof. Nikogosyan who measure also punches dimension, "buckler" in "925-1000" who register every detail of a punch like Sherlock Holmes, and last but not least Johanna Gehrlein.
Mrs. Gehrlein chose to buy some companion to her sugar spoon - and maybe it was for her the same experience as we have, when we are visit outside country, e.g. like China.
But if we fall in love like she, we start to observe details, differences, learn origin of family and their member as well. Mrs. Gehrlein observed detail by detail of these rose pattern cutlery and went to be a collector first of cast silver.
By time and while she has learned to count every rose leaf, rose hip, flower's number of petal, branches surface be rough or smooth, branches structure twisted like in "Sleeping Beauty" or straight like skyscraper? Structure of handle in jig saw pattern or closed?
Then she has started to look where these "Sleeping Beauty" come from. How they were designed, mould made, cast, finished by jig saw, file, then polished up, textured by oxidation and signed as well. Each of these is "unique"!
She found a main source of production in Hanau area of Germany - products distributed in Germany, as well to the globes population. And there were many other sources in Germany to - like from Pforzheim, e.g. CW (W in a "circle") = Christoph Widmann.
Mrs. Gehrlein were so fascinated, that these "Sleeping Beauty" came out of little workshop, as well out of big factory of cutlery maker. And she started to research not only origin of "Sleeping Beauty"; but also history of maker, their marks, their whole seller and their marks. Here now she describes about 100 company and workshop, their ancestor and descendant as well - on some of them never before was anything published!
Maker's mark is shown from every company or workshop, if ever these marks have existed. Because some never have marked her products - reason e.g. they were producer for others e.g. whole seller.
This is a strong output of Mrs. Gehrlein work: You could find the source of many not marked item to; because she has observed every detail of item not marked and has described and photographed very detailed these differences of not marked ones.
But the ever best one I've found in her book is, she show also BAD STRUCK MARK'S - now some nightmare and collector's headache be solved before they start! Nothing could be better - maybe she is the first who has introduced this collector's assistance in a published monograph?
My favour pattern is "Rose 300" of Wilhelm Ludwig, designed in 1949 by Prof. Bernd Oehmichen, then after, second time he is director of "Hanauer Zeichenakademie". I'm fascinated because this is a part of a "Corporate Image" he developed in Products, Packaging, Prints and Presentation on the market - like Peter Behrens for AEG.
There is one lemon sweet: It's in German - but from prehistory on our ancestors and now we are in kindergarten look to and learn from pictures. I think if you be really interested, you would learn very quickly the meaning of main word in descriptions, if you look to the shown photo.
That's now compressed in a book of 304 pages, more then 1,000 black and white, duotone and colour illustration; many of these photos in original dimension for direct opportunity of comparisons with self collected item. 1,380 g - of course not a collector's pocket book, if you like to stroll with this on flea markets.
Oskar M. Zurell


In this column we present images and descriptions of Crests and Mottoes of British, Irish and Scottish families as engraved on silver items.
square shaped salver with Lambert crest


A Yorkshire family. A lion passant.
The crest is engraved on a Two Handled Cup and Cover with Fuller White, London 1752 hallmarks
square shaped salver with Lambert crest


Closing our February 2010 edition of ASCAS Newsletter I hope you have appreciated its content.
Your comments, suggestions and advice will be of great help.

My thanks to Joao Garcia Branco, Andrew Brasch, Carmelo Bruno Bruni, Philippe Cocriamont, H. Dinerstein, Philippe Dupont, Jayne Dye, Helen Eyre, Jessica Lovett, Robert Massart, Adriaan ter Meulen, Jim Nord, Meagan (Bee) O'Hara, Postnikov, Nancy Stuckwisch for their invaluable contributions.

Giorgio Busetto
ASCAS is a community of people having a common interest in antique silver.
It is a non-profit association without commercial links. Membership is open to whomever has a true interest in this subject matter.
ASCAS has no real property and no fees are requested nor accepted from members.
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Likewise, ASCAS is not responsible for opinions, evaluation and images displayed, and in any form published or supplied for publication, by its members who, in any case, maintain the property of their works and assure the respect of national and international legislation about Intellectual Property.
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