Two new articles for ASCAS website
Candice Hern, romance novelist, is a new member of ASCAS. In this article she presents
her collection of Georgian silver vinaigrettes
Vinaigrettes, a highly popular item from the late 18th century through the mid-19th
century, were small containers used for holding various aromatic substances, usually
dissolved in vinegar. A tiny piece of sponge, soaked in the liquid, was contained beneath
a grill or perforated cover.
Giorgio Busetto presents:
Hispano-American silver: the "TOPOS"
Argento Ispano-Americano: "TOPOS"
An odd pin in the shape of a spoon, used by Bolivian women to keep their shawls closed
This article is available in two versions
Welcome to new ASCAS members:
David Berman - USA
Lars Björkman - Sweden
Gabriele Bonetto - Italy
Vera Bradford - USA
Charles C. Cage - USA
Norma Cal - USA
Juan Camos - Portugal
Mary Clarke - South Africa
Elizabeth A. Clough - USA
Mark Daniels - England UK
Mary Dostal - USA
Emanuele Felicioni - Italy
Alan Goldsmith - South Africa
Suzanne Gouin - Canada
Maureen Heenan - USA
D.L. Irish - Australia
Pat McCarthy - Canada
Lucia McKay - USA
John McTavish - Canada
R. Milburn - England UK
Willand Ringborg - Sweden
Susan Urquhart - USA
Ronald J. White - USA
Members' Window # 23
Maurizio Perota and Giorgio Busetto present:
A collection of vinaigrettes
a photographic gallery of Maurizio Perota's vinaigrettes collection
Questions from ASCAS members
Giampiero Ierbulla writes:
......I'm trying to find the origin of this two silver items:
1) CENTERPIECE of shallow boat shape, with floral engraving on the body and two handles in the
shape of fantastic animals (winged dolphins)
long: 14 in (cm 35,4) wide: 8 1/8 in. (cm. 20,6) high: 4 1/4 in. (cm. 11) weight: 27,5 oz.
2) HAND HAMMERED DISH, standing on three ball feet and embossed with fruit branches.
diameter: 10 1/8 in (cm 25,8) high: 1 1/2 in. (cm 3,7) weight: 15,2 oz. (431 gr.)
Can you tell me anything about them based on the pictures attached?
Thank you in advance.
Both items were made in Italy, about 1930.
The centerpiece has the hallmark of silversmith Umberto Malinverni, Milano (Milan)
Also the dish was made by an Italian silversmith, but I'm unable to identify the maker.
The same hallmark is present on the 'silver and ivory vase' presented on
February Members' window.
John Chittenden writes:
...at a garage sale I have bought this silver plate piece.
I took a picture of the piece and scanned the bottom so you can see it.
So if you would please help me - I'd be greatful.
Ludo D'Haese writes:
...Is there anyone who can tell me where and who made this sculpture.
It is 37cm high by 16 cm x 12 cm.
Ludo D’ Haese
The sculpture was made in Italy, after 1970, by an unidentified Florence's silversmith (383 FI),
who now has ceased his activity. The object is made of a thin sheet of silver covering a base on resin
or another heavy material. "R" is the symbol of Riempito (filled). More information about Italian hallmarking
system is available on ASCAS
article # 46.
I'm unable to identify the author of the sculpture (an Italian sculptor famous for his 'Ballerine' is
Francesco Messina), but an Italian web sites cites as author of 'ballerine' a Tuscany's sculptor Amilcare
Santini, 1910-1975 (Tuscany is the Region of Florence and the signature on the base maybe is 'Santini').
Leslie Salvage writes:
...I have this old and unremarkable table spoon which has had plenty of wear although the
marks are quite clear. I would be pleased if anyone could give me any information on its history
or actual origin apart from Nevada. I have no idea what the marks signify. Many thanks in advance.
The maker is Daniel & Arter, Birmingham. Nevada is one of marks used by this firm (Argentine,
Bengal, Brazilian Silver...)
Replies to members' questions
Ellen Fuerst writes:
...I also have seen 'R_C' (it's not clear to me that the middle character is an 'E')
on some older Italian silver pieces. In each case, I have found that the item seems to be
related to either Cesa (Italian hallmark '1 AL') or Ricci, both of which are part of
Gruppo Greggio in Italy. I would suggest trying to contact Gruppo Greggio with a photo of
the piece and your question.
Mark Mandel writes:
... in reply to George Zochowsky's query about Egyption silver references, I recommend
'International hallmarks on silver collected by Tardy'. The first mark shows the silver
fineness, which I believe to be 600/1000, the city of assay or manufacture is above this
mark, then the palm tree, which is the mark used after 1946 (prior to 1946, a cat was
used). Lastly, the arabic letter indicates the year (prior to 1946, the roman alphabet
Geoffrey Axt writes:
... This is in response to Wayne Robbins' question in regard to his Samuel Pemberton
The shape you question, namely, a cut corner rectangle or irregular octagon, was a shape
often favored by Pemberton in constructing small boxes and vinaigrettes (his specialty).
This delightful lidded box is known as an etui (small, decorative case). Etuis were made
to contain all sorts of personal accessories. The most common item contained in an etui
was a small scent bottle. Larger etuis typically contained ear picks, snuff spoons,
pencils, and knives of various types for various purposes. Physicians often carried an
etui that contained a set of bleeding knives.
You identified this object as a needle case. Unless there is some specific part of its
interior construction to suggest that it was intended as a repository for needles (such
as a series of small compartments), then I suspect it was more likely a scent bottle case
that is missing its scent bottle. Such shaped etuis are known to have been made in
Birmingham during this period for containing scent bottles.
An example of a similar object made in Birmingham in 1807 by Joseph Taylor is shown on
page 64 of Kenneth Crisp Jones' book The Silversmiths of Birmingham and Their Marks:
Whatever its original function, your lidded box appears to be a very nice example of
Keeley Collins writes:
... Cindy wrote about a 'Sheffield Plate' bowl and wanted some info on the maker/age.
The mark pictured is not particularly helpful, but I may have found a reference to the
shield with a figure in it with vertical lines running through it.
Cindy, can you get a copy of 'Encyclopedia of American Silver Manufaturers' by
Dorothy Rainwater & Martin/Collette Fuller? You can find it in your local library,
or have them order it for you. There is a photo of a mark like the one you describe on
page 286. There is a shield with vertical lines and a Knight on a horse, with a 'K' in the
upper left corner. If this is the mark you see, it is ascribed to Mary C. Knight listed
as a metalworker with The Society of Arts and Crafts in Boston circa 1902-1927.
Sheffield Plate is named for the process in Sheffield, England, but if it is heavy, it
may be silver-on-copper (do you see some copper coloring coming through?). Silverplating
was in varying thicknesses and generally will wear off with cleaning over time.
Most modern articles recommend polishing once a year with a gently wash. If you love it,
it can be replated, but this is an expensive undertaking. Estes Silver in Atlanta Georgia
has the ability to do this, and to appraise your item.
Charls C. Cage writes:
... I recently applied for membership, so hope you will permit to share
with you some information on Rick Bakke's grandmother's spoons which appear in the
new February newsletter.
The city mark on these spoons is that of Karlsruhe, Germany,
and the maker EK is Ernst Kölitz, court goldsmith & perhaps the most prolific maker
in mid-19th century Karlsruhe.
Charles C. Cage.
in this new column we present a page (one page only) obtained by makers' brochures, books, auction catalogs or whatever other printed paper,
that may be of particular interest for ASCAS members.
The images will be published at a "low resolution" level and for private and personal use only
This is the image of page 169 of the Catalog N. 14 December 1932 published by SOCIETA' ANONIMA
A. CALDERONI - Via Durini 31 Milano (Milan - Italy).
The page illustrates three 800/1000 silver "Centri tavola" (Centerpieces)
and a crystal and silver vase.
Surprisingly the centerpiece on the top is the same of Giampiero Ierbulla
(see question in this Newsletter) bearing Umberto Malinverni - Milano hallmark.
I assume that, in this case, Calderoni firm acted as retailer for some Malinverni
8150Beautiful solid silver, hand made fruit or sweetmeet cup, with
chiselled dragons on the sides. Measures 35x20 cm. Lire 360 (it's interesting to note
the 1932 sale price of Lire 360 = 0,18 EUR = 0,21 US$)
A S C O T T
ASCAS member David Shlosberg, the author of the book Eighteenth Century Silver Tea Tongs, has the intention
to set up a group for collectors of Tea Tongs to enable an exchange of knowledge and expertise between
those fortunate enough to own examples of these delightful artefacts.
The name of the new entity is ASCOTT (A Society for Collectors Of Tea Tongs).
More information about this new group are available on Dr. Shlosberg web site at
A new web site
ASCAS member Raoul Verbist has created his new web site titled CHAMBRES DE MES AMIS (in French)
The address is www.chambresamis.org
Closing our March 2006 edition of ASCAS Newsletter I hope you have appreciated
Your comments, suggestions and advice will be of great
My thanks to Geoffrey Axt (USA), Charles C. Cage (USA), John Chittenden (USA), Keeley Collins (USA), Ludo D'Haese (Belgium),
Jayne Dye (USA), Ellen Fuerst (USA), Candice Hern (USA), Giampiero Ierbulla (Italy), Mark Mandel (Canada),
Leslie Salvage (USA), David Shlosberg (UK), Raoul Verbist (Belgium), for their invaluable contributions.
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