ASCAS Association of Small Collectors of Antique Silver         newsletter # 50 - JULY 2008
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A new article for ASCAS website

  Teapot by John Coney (1655-1722)

R. T. H. Halsey presents:

The Clearwater Collection of Colonial Silver English version

...American Art -its expression by our painters, sculptors, and craftsmen and the recognition of them by our people- was until recent years handicapped by the belief that our art was of recent growth and lacked the weight of history, tradition, and inheritance, which in the minds of many seemed necessary for its widespread recognition. This erroneous belief is fast becoming dissipated, largely owing to the development of collections of American decorative art by the Metropolitan, Boston, and Providence museums. Their examples are being followed by the managements of other museums, notably the Brooklyn Institute and some of our large western museums.....

click here English version


New members

Welcome to new ASCAS members:  

Alvaro Jose Brito Junior - Brazil
Diane Cavanaugh - USA
Patricia M. Davis - USA
Tim Flanagan - USA
Peter Frazier - USA
Joseph Gale - Australia
Bernard Jouret - Belgium
Leslie Keane - USA
Peter Lockett - Canada
Dominique Mayeux - France/Egypt
Roger Mortimer - USA
Marcos Sartirana - Andorra
Michael Thomas - England UK
Bella Tucci - USA
Tom Vinson - USA

Members' Window # 50

'Hanau Silver' plate: George Roth & Co

Les Salvage presents:

A Hanau Silver with an uncommon London Import Hallmark English version

... From 1867 to 1904, the letter "F" was added to the usual sterling marks for foreign sterling silver imported into the UK. But from 1904, the "F" was dropped and was replaced by the decimal value of the standard mark and a special assay office mark had to be struck ....

click here English version

Mail to ASCAS: e-mail

Dominique Bochet writes:
... I need your help in identifying the maker (an E and three points) I found on a late 18th century French spoon

... and on this fork with porcelain handle
  Thank you for any help you may supply.
Dominique Bochet
The fork is Italian and this mark was in use from 1870 to 1935.
I'm sorry but I'm unable to identify the makers.
I trust on the help of ASCAS members to reply to your question.
Giorgio Busetto

Josephine Lewis writes:
... I have a quaich and the identification of the marks is baffling me. I had assumed that it was Scottish but????
I enclose pictures and thank you in advance for any information on its marks
Josephine Lewis 

The image of the marks of your item isn't well readable. Anyway it is a Hanau Silver, Germany end 19th /beginning 20th century.
More about Hanau silver in my private website at , at and in Dorothea Burstyn article in ASCAS website at
Giorgio Busetto

Susan Harley writes:
... I would really appreciate your help in identifying these pieces I have recently acquired. I have enclosed several pictures for you to look at.
Many thanks in advance.

Hanau silver or something else?... ASCAS members help is necessary!
Giorgio Busetto

Nina Paris writes:
... I'm trying to identify the marks of this piece. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Many thanks in advance.
Nina Paris (Michel) 

Laurel Boshco writes:
... I have a question that I cannot find out about and was hoping you may be able to help me.
I have two pieces of sterling silver jewelry, they are broaches, they each have real bone of some kind in them and they are hallmarked with an L and a G. The L seems to be on top of the G so it looks like maybe one letter.
Have you any idea of who that may be?? The period?
I am going to attach a couple of photos for you to see.
I appreciate so much if you're able to help me out with this information.
Thank you in advance for any help you can give me.
Laurel Boshco  

Kari Helenius writes:
... I would like ask our members about two beakers which I have.
The smaller one was purchased in Helsinki approximately 10 years ago. The larger one is a recent acquisition also from Helsinki.
Attached you find 3 pictures of these.
The larger beaker is 94mm high and the upper diameter is 83mm.
It has clear marks (Postnikova 1942, 2072 and 2667, so it is made in Moscow 1721)(below left).
The smaller one which is partially gilt is 78mm high and the upper diameter is 69mm.
It has a mark which I have not been able to identify (below right).
The beaker looks Baltic, North German or Scandinavian.
Could it be that it is an earlier beaker which has been copied by the Moscow master.
Can anybody identify this mark or have an idea of its origin?
Best regards
Kari Helenius  

Patricia Lozano writes:
... I have some silver candlesticks (2) and dish, I would like to get additional information pertaining to them.
Would it be possible for you to direct me to the right person to get this information.
Patricia Lozano 

Your pieces have Sheffield 1883 hallmark. I'm unable to identify the maker and trust on the help of ASCAS members for its identification.
Giorgio Busetto

Replies to questions

Michael Urban receives this reply about his silver spoon ( see June Newsletter)
Robert Massart writes:
... I can give some information related to the silver spoon presented in the mail by Michael Urban in the latest Ascas newsletter.
The marks prove that the spoon was made in the Netherlands.
- The "lion passant" in a hexagon with the figure "2" stands for the silver purity of .833 (mark used between 1814 and 1953).
- The Minerva head (not a sovereign's head) is the duty mark. The letter present on Minerva's helmet indicates from which assay office it came.
- In my opinion the fancy D is a date letter, but as the sharpness of the picture is not very good it is impossible to define the date.
- Finally I presume that the letter R is the maker's mark.
Kind regards,

A. Branislav receives this reply about his Russian Spice container ( see June 2008 Newsletter)
Adam Goldsmith writes:
... I showed the photographs of the Judaic Spice container as sent in by A Branislav to a friend of mine who is a Judaica collector. He agrees that this is a fake as they are being copied possibly in Poland and is at most ten years old.
This mark has been seen on a couple of different spice containers as well as a yad – the instrument used to read the torah.
In addition it is most unlikely to find a spice tower with human figures on it.
Hope this is helpful
Adam Goldsmith

An addition to the mark on Dominique Bochet's sugar tongs ( see December 2007 Newsletter)
Christophe Ginter writes:
... in a previous Ascas monthly letter, I gave information on a French silversmith, that is not fully relevant, partly wrong.
Herewith I would like to give the complete information:
Silversmith: Joseph Rogé
Appointed in Bordeaux (not in Blaye) in 1778,
Known activity up to 1789.
Two pictures attached:
- main mark (I RO GE)
-second mark (for smaller devices) = IR (a heart between I and R),
over a Fleur de Lys, and under a crowned Fleur de Lys.
With kind regards.
Christophe Ginter


In this column we present a page obtained from makers' brochures, books, auction catalogs, advertising or whatever other printed paper related to silver, which may be of interest for ASCAS members.
The images will be published at a "low resolution" level and for private and personal use only
Decree July 6, 1749 issued by Carlo Emanuele, King of Sardinia This month ASCAS presents a Decree issued July 6, 1740 by H.M. the King of Sardinia Carlo Emanuele of Savoy dealing the matter of Gold, Silver and Coins. The decree forbade any export of gold and silver under the penalty of confiscation.
It's interesting to note that CARLO EMANUELE issued the decree as, "Dei Gratia", King of Sardinia, of Cyprus and of Jerusalem; Duke of Savoy, of Monferrato, of Aosta, of Chiablese and Genevese; Prince of Piedmont and Oneglia; Marquis of Italy, of Saluzzo, of Susa, of Ivrea, of Ceva, of Maro, of Oristano and of Sesana; Count of Moriana, of Geneva, of Nizza, of Tenda, of Asti, of Alessandria, of Goceano, of Romonte, of Novara and of Tortona; Baron of Vaud and Faussigni; Lord of Vercelli and Pinerolo, of Tarantasia, of Lumellina and Valsesia; Prince and Vicary of the Holy Roman Empire in Italy.
Decree July 6, 1749 issued by Carlo Emanuele, King of Sardinia


In this column we presents an abstract from a page of the "What is? Silver Dictionary"
courtesy of home page
silver bougie-box or taper-box: Milano mid 19th century


The wax jack was a container or a support holding up a taper, treated with wax or turpentine, lit to heat the block of sealing wax used to fasten letters and documents. Usually, a personal seal with a design cut into the bottom was pressed into the hot wax to leave personal identification.......


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 the shelf" of this month presents:

"Per allumare"

Argenti per la luce del Settecento genovese          (18th century silver tools for illuminance in Genoa)

San Giorgio Editrice Spa - Genova - December 2007
Per allumare: Argenti per la luce del Settecento genovese
This is a new book edited in December 2007 to illustrate the exhibition of 18th century Genoese silver held in the Galleria Nazionale di Palazzo Spinola in Genoa.
This book was a real surprise for me as I found in the "snuffers" chapter at page 89 the reproduction of the Italian version of John Evelyn's poem "Mundus Muliebris" composed by Renata Camozzi expressly for ASCAS and published in November 2005 in my article "Silver toilet sets / Servizi da Toeletta in argento" (the article was written in double version: English and Italian).

Poem written by John Evelyn (1690)

Italian version by Renata Camozzi

A new Scene to us next presents,
The Dressing-Room and Implements,
Of Toilet Plate Gilt, and Emboss'd,
And several other things of Cost,

The Table Miroir, one Glue Pot,
One for Pomatum, and whatnot?
Of Washes Unguents and Cosmeticks,
A pair of Silver Candlesticks;

Snuffers and Snuff-dish, Boxes more,
For Powders, Patches, Water Store,
In silver Flasks, or Bottles, Cups
Cover'd or open to wash chaps.

Ed ora si affaccia un nuovo scenario:
il di Lei spogliatoio ed il suo necessario
da toeletta d'argento dorato e sbalzato,
e vari oggetti dal costo elevato.

Di saponi e cosmetici un armamentario:
il bagnomaria con il suo necessario,
di candelieri una coppia d'argento,
lo smoccolatoio per lo spegnimento.

Lo specchio è sul tavolo con lo scatolino
delle ciprie e dei nei, pronto fin dal mattino,
con vasi e barattoli di creme ed unguenti,
coppe, caraffe e leggiadri argenti.
image of page 89 of 'Per allumare' book image of page 89 of 'Per allumare' book: detail

ASCAS is proud to be reputed worthful to contribute to a book edited by a so authoritative Institution as the Galleria Nazionale di Palazzo Spinola of Genoa.

I firmly deplore noting that the author of the chapter about "Snuffers" (page 89 of the book: on care of Ambra Giacomini) forgot to quote ASCAS article and the literary authorship of Renata Camozzi, notwithstanding that ASCAS # 44 article (written two years before and since then freely viewable in our website at )
was undoubtedly the source of her reproduction.
Anyway a fine chapter of an interesting book on a little known subject, and, moreover, an excellent matter to comment with my friends.


Closing our JULY 2008 edition of ASCAS Newsletter I hope you have appreciated its content.
Your comments, suggestions and advice will be of great help.

My thanks to Dominique Bochet, Laurel Boshco, Jayne Dye, Christophe Ginter, Adam Goldsmith, R.T.H. Halsey, Susan Harley, Kari Helenius, Josephine Lewis, Patricia Lozano Robert Massart, Nina Paris, Les Salvage, JoAnne Wilkinson, 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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