ASCAS Association of Small Collectors of Antique Silver

newsletter # 166 March 2018
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A new article for ASCAS website

Bill Jackman presents:

Silver sailing ships English version

Literature about this subject matter is scarce and few written material is available to support collectors in their research.
The author has a collection of 35 ships gathered in three years of research.
Usually silver models of boats are very accurate in design and although there is no shortage of them the better ones are hard to find and can be expensive.
Early Chinese boats are much sought after, especially those fitted with cannons. Some of them are no more than 50mm long.
As many examples are unmarked, the collector can't know where the boat was made or who made it.
The first silver ships were called nef. They were a dinner-table ornamental or utilitarian article in the form of a model of a ship, with masts, sails, rigging and with various figures on board.
The ancient examples (13th-16th centuries) were drinking cups. The later were receptacles for dining implements.
Such pieces were used in France, Germany, Spain and Italy but most of the extant nefs were made in Germany at the end of the 19th century.
There is disagreement about nef's use. Someone believe that they began as incense boat of the church, other believe they were an ancestor of brass and silver "Burgundy waggons" or a drinking vessel as noted in 13th century French romances.
The nef was an important part of Continental elegant dining, bearing in its hollow hull the spoon, knife, napkin, spices of the host....
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     English version

New members

Welcome to new ASCAS members:

Yosef Immanuel - Israel
Pierre Saric - France
Jerry Sun - USA

Mail to ASCAS: e-mail

Donna Meyer writes:
...I have recently acquired a set of open cauldron salt cellars along with spoons, initialled W on each and am not sure if I am identifying them correctly.
Spoons: Marked with a full body lion and the initials T.C. I believe this means that they are definitely sterling silver and made in the town of Birmingham and that the maker was Theodore Cohn.
Salt Cellars: Marked G.R for I believe George John Richards a British Silversmith.
Again has the same full body lion so I assume the same as above. Then there is a female head facing to the left not 100% sure about this?
There a mark that is very worn off but I think it is a leopards head for the London Assay Office?
There is a letter which I know would provide me with the date but I can't figure out what letter this is?
Is there any help you can be, I attached photos?
If you can, thank you sooooo much in advance!
Donna Meyer

The marks are rubbed and not well readable. Anyway the salts are hallmarked London 1846 maker George John Richards (see ).
The spoons' maker is (possibly) Thomas Chawner, active c.1772-1786
Giorgio Busetto


In this column we presents 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.
This column is published under the kind permission of Giorgio Busetto's website


This month ASCAS presents an old trade advertising card issued by The Imperial Tobacco Co for Great Britain and Ireland Ltd.


An early 20th century trade card advertising Wills's cigarettes of W.D & H.O Wills, Bristol and London.
The trade card bears on the front the image of a British silver hallmark and on the back the descriptive illustration of British hallmarking system.
Its measures are 6.5 cm. x 3.5 cm. (2 5/8" x 1 3/8")


In this column we present an abstract from a page of the "What is? Silver Dictionary"
courtesy of home page leave your LIKE on facebook


An unusual item in the scissors shape of a stork, commonly described as "umbilical cord scissors".
Sometimes the finger rings have a support (often a pair of turtles, symbol of longevity) to keep scissors straight on.
When the scissors are opened, a baby in swaddling clothes can be seen in the body cavity.
Uncertain is the effective use of this item and various hypotheses have been formulated....


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


The firm was organized by Samuel Simpson in 1866. In 1878 Simpson made an agreement with William Rogers Jr to supervise the manufacture and marketing of Simpson, Hall, Miller & Co Rogers "Eagle" brand.
The "Eagle" was a brief duration business (1862 - c. 1865) managed by William Henry Rogers (often identified as William Rogers Jr, he died in 1896) after the retirement of his father in 1861... MORE...


In this column we present images and descriptions of Crests and Mottoes of British, Irish and Scottish families as engraved on silver items.
This column is published under the kind permission of Giorgio Busetto's website home page



family crest: HAY

This crest is on a silver spoon from London 1711-12 by David Willaume I, the famous Huguenot silversmith.
The engraved crest is a half image of a man with a beard and a Scottish cap holding an ox yoke over his right shoulder the crest of the Hay family in Balhousie or Leys Scotland.
It might have belonged to John Hay, 2nd Marquess of Tweeddale (1645 - 20 April 1713) who was a representative peer after the union of England and Scotland in 1707. Which would explain the crown which is either a baron's or that of a lord of Parliament in the Scots peerage, and a Scottish Crest on a piece of London silver.
Maurice Meslans

family crest: HAY

family crest: HAY

- 1786 -

This table is obtained from The Book of Entries of the Names, Places of abode and Marks of the several Silversmiths and Plate Workers residing in Sheffield, or within twenty miles thereof, who are required to send their goods to the Assay Office, lately established in the Town of Sheffield by an Act of Parliament lately passed in the Thirteenth Year of the Reign of King George the Third intituled:
An Act for appointing Wardens and Assaymasters for
Assaying Wrought Plate in the Towns of Sheffield
and Birmingham

YEAR 1786

Sheffield Assay Office: hallmarks register
Sheffield Assay Office: 1786 hallmarks register
Sheffield Assay Office: 1786 hallmarks register

Closing our March 2018 edition of ASCAS Newsletter I hope you have appreciated its content.
Your comments, suggestions and advice will be of great help.

My thanks to Bill Jackmann, Maurice Meslans and Donna Meyer for their precious 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.
ASCAS keeps in touch with its members only through periodical newsletters, e-mails and web-site updating and ignores and is not responsible for any other activity pursued by its members.
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.
ASCAS does not have the full addresses of its members (only town, country and e-mail address are requested for membership).
ASCAS handles and protects with care its members' e-mail addresses, will not disclose the addresses to third parties, will use this information only to reply to requests received from members and for communications strictly related to its activity.
These rules are expressly accepted by submitting the membership request.

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