Christophe Ginter presents:
Fraud on silver taxes during the French Royalty
Chalon sur Saône (France) 1762-1768
Poinçons de fraude fiscale du XVIIIème siècle Chalon
sur Saône (France) 1762-1768
.....During a recent review by a private collector,
regarding a table service, I have been discovering an
exceptional silver item bearing faked hallmarks struck
by the maker himself in order to escape silver taxes and
In spite of its false marks, the fork, which is made of
plain silver (a model called "uniplat") may be dated
1762-1768 and produced in the Burgundian town of
Michael Carter presents:
A pair of 18th century French wine tasters
Une paire de taste-vin français du XVIIIe siècle
.....In this article, I present two silver wine tasters
by Jacques Famechon, who was admitted as a master
silversmith in Paris on March 15, 1770 and was still
active in 1787.
A wine taster, as its name implies, is for tasting wine
and for observing its color, and several types existed
in the 18th century in France, each one corresponding to
a particular wine-making region. The types vary
according to form of the handle and the presence or
absence of decorative motifs. One can find wine tasters
with a handle in the form of a snake, with a rolled
handle, with a thumb-rest, with a shell- or lily-shaped
handle or with no handle at all. A variant of the
wine-taster is the so called hunting cup, which is very
rare and much sought after. These types also varied
according to their size, the smallest being used for
spirits, medium-sized ones for wine and the largest for
Welcome to new ASCAS members:
Daryl Adams - The Netherlands
Ruth Hunter - USA
Tom Maguire - USA
Rosemary Monahan - USA
John M. Sargent - USA
Paul Skippen - England UK
Neil Smith - USA
Huub van der Sanden - The Netherlands
Members' Window # 74
Les Salvage presents:
Gorham & Co for Tiffany & Co
I am presenting here, a meat fork that appeared on Ebay,
in March this year.
At the time, I was very surprised to see that it had
been made by Gorham & Co for Tiffany & Co
Some members of ASCAS more knowledgeable than I am would
not perhaps have been surprised, but I venture to guess
that others would have, and so it is with these others
in mind that I am sharing this information.....
Stewart Hersey writes:
... I have made a short film about making a silver candlestick
which I would like to share with your members via a link to it
on my website.
It shows the traditional method used to make a spun candlestick,
and I am sure it would be interesting for them.
Stewart Hersey is the Managing Director of M. C. Hersey &
The business started as Mills and Hersey around 1970 (mark M&H).
In present days the firm is active at 87 Railway Road,
The video follows, step by step, the traditional manufacture of
a silver candlestick.
Follow this link to see the video
Haroune Toumani writes:
...I need help to identify the mark of this basket.
Thanks for your help
The marks belong, presumably, to a German maker (silver
I’m sorry, but I’m unable to identify the maker.
Ludo D’Haese writes:
...Is it possible to identify the maker on this German mark?
The maker is Wilhelm Rentrop, Altena i. Westfalen,
Werkstatte fur Kirchengerate.
Allen Carlson writes:
...I have a question about a pair of Georg Jensen "Blossom"
sugar tongs I just bought.
I seem to remember reading that the tongs should have a spring
that kept the tongs open. The tongs that I bought do not have a
Do you think that they are defective?
Bruno Bruni writes:
...In my attachment I forward the images of a French niello
silver, box shaped, vesta case. Decorated on the exterior with a
cross-weave niello pattern. The hinged lid, when opened, reveals
a striker plate (which is also hinged). The matches are kept
below the striker plate.
Dimensions 54 x 24 x 12 mm, weight 38,4 grams.
Hallmarks: Small guarantee mark (boar's head) and an
unidentified (M//D) makers mark.
My question is: can someone identify the maker?
Piero Eduardo writes:
...another question about the silver ring of a pipe marked B &
Co into a rectangle, London 1913. On the briar the pipe bears
the mark "Bewlay". Bewlay was a well known chain of English pipe
stores owned by Salmon & Gluckstein active from the beginning of
the 20th century until the 1980s.
I'd wish to know any possible information about the silver mark.
Thanks in advance
B&Co is the hallmark of Bewlay & Co Ltd. Some further
information is available in the
"Tobacconists, Pipe Makers and Pipe Mounters" section of my
Eddy Huysmans writes:
...The little note "Crests and Mottoes of British, Irish and
Scottish families as engraved on silver items" made me think of
a coconut cup I bought about a year ago.
It has no silver marks, but I think it is British, Irish or
Scottish from about 1800.
Maybe someone can give me some information about the crest or
Geldolph Everts writes:
...When in Armenia, I purchased four spoons, first three of the
same set (with Armenian initials engraved), then much later one
additional spoon of a different set. All four have the same
marks. The assayer is Victor Savinkov, but in existing reference
works I have not found the master; the Cyrillic letters appear
I was wondering if Postnikova could help out. She will be
updating her wonderful book all the time ( I have the 1995
edition) with more recent discoveries, so I might be lucky...
With many thanks, as always, and kind regards,
Claudio Morelli writes:
...I believe that this uncommon object is a truffles' slicer.
What I don't know is who is the maker (Giuseppe Giovara?) and
when he was active.
A similar mark (a harp between letters G and G) was used
by Giuseppe Giuvara, Torino ....1822-1824...
It's probable that, later, the symbol was maintained and used by
a descendant of this silversmith (anyway, after 1870,
considering that the piece is marked '800').
Eddie Robinson writes:
...I have a question if you can help: I have a pair of sugar
tongs with the following mark.
Could you shed some light on it for me?
Have a great day.
The maker of your sugar tongs is, possibly, Edwin Howard
& Son, 90 Pond Street, Sheffield, active 1863-1870. Further
information is available in my web site at
Any help will be appreciated
Replies to questions
Pamela Coates writes:
This looks like a ladies pocket watch holder, or rings,
depending upon the size of the three hooks. The center is for
Carolyn Meacham writes:
I have had items like this over the years
Thanks for sharing your unusual shaped holder
The item below above is a hanging pin cushion / ring holder. It
could also be used for hat pins.
I would be willing to bet that the maker's mark is ALLtd (Adie
They made a lot of these.
Simon Buxton writes:
I can throw a little light on the glass holders submitted
by Geldolph Everts.
The number he queries (Rd 655681) is a national British
Registered Design number introduced in 1884 and used up until
around 1932 - a sort of copyright. His number was issued in 1917
and he is quite close in suggesting it was a pattern number.
As a rough guide the number 300,000 was issued in 1900. The
number is a guide to when the design was registered, but not the
date of an individual piece, though in this instance we have a
hallmark date letter. It covered a range of decorative goods
including ceramics and wasn't limited to silver ware.
David Mckinley writes:
As my particular field of research has been early English
hallmarking my eye was caught by the marks on Neil Hodgson’s
reliquary in the April newsletter which, at first glance, would
appear to be English.
On closer examination however these marks cannot be identified
as any that I have come across before and I therefore tried to
place them in some other country. This I have been unable to do
although if any fellow member can do so the problem will be
In the absence of any current alternative therefore I offer the
The two centrally placed marks would appear to be the English
lion passant guardant and an English date letter. The two other
marks I have been unable to identify.
There were several years in which the upper case letter ‘H’ was
used in London but the most likely year in this case I suggest
is 1723 although the punch outline is wrong for this date. The
outline to the lion is too distorted to be sure of but the
absence of the leopard’s head is suspect although it was omitted
from small work such as teaspoons at this date.
English reliquaries are somewhat uncommon since they are usually
of Roman Catholic origin and relate to a period when that faith
was outlawed in England.
I have come across a communion cup in a Roman Catholic Church
which has no hallmarks but is struck three times with the
maker’s mark and he was Jewish. It can be dated to 1745 by the
inscription under the foot.
If Neil’s reliquary is English my belief is that it was, like
the communion cup, made for a recusant (editor's note: a person, esp.
a Roman Catholic, who refused to attend the services of the Church
of England) probably in the early
18th century and that the marks on it are false and were made to
give the appearance of those current at the time.
The unrecognisable marks were struck because a piece of this
date would be expected to carry four marks, the additional ones
being the maker’s mark and the leopard’s head. Presumably this
maker did not wish to be identified.
This is only a theory and I am open to any other suggestions.
SILVER FROM SILESIA 1871-1945
A temporary exhibition from 27th March - 3rd October 2010 in
the Stiftung Schlesisches Museum zu Goerlitz S.b.R., GOERLITZ (Germany)
The foundation of the German Empire in 1871 led to an
economic upturn from which Silesia's gold and silver
manufacturers also benefited. This exhibition is the first
attempt to display the wide range of articles produced by the
many workshops and shops which appeared at that time in Silesian
towns. We are grateful for numerous loans from public and
private collections in Germany and Poland without which this
exhibition would not be possible.
Visitors will be able to admire an impressive variety of coffee
and tea services, candelabras, goblets, plates and trays, prizes
and military memorabilia, chalices, ciboria and monstrance's, as
well as an array of cutlery, including a surprising amount of
individual pieces designed for special purposes and for special
see at http://www.schlesisches-museum.de/Temporary-Exhibition-Si.3738.0.html
The exhibition can only be seen in Görlitz, and is accompanied
by an illustrated catalogue with a list of brand names and
descriptions of the then most important Silesian manufacturers.
The soft bound catalogue includes some black and white, and many
colour photographs, detailed descriptions, and measuring of all
120 shown objects.
Rainer Lemor, a very engaged descendant from Julius Lemor,
describes there also 13 of the then active companies in details
of history, and production program. Also he shows 220 maker's
marks and trade marks; with indication of where described, and
possible timeframe of use.
Included is also a list of literature.
If a visit is impossible during exhibition, but also for
preparing a visit, the catalogue (ISBN 978-3-9813510-2-6) could
be ordered on line through the Museum shop:
see at: http://www.schlesisches-museum.de/Publikationen-zu-Sondera.1984.0.html
Unfortunately the text is in German and Polish only, but
pictures and marks can be easily "read" and understood by anyone
interested in the matter.
Address: Stiftung Schlesisches Museum zu Goerlitz S.b.R.
D-02826 Goerlitz / Germany
Tel. +49 3581 8791 0
Fax +49 3581 8791 200
Thanks to Oskar M. Zurell for his information
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
This month we present an ancient advertisement of
JOSEPH ELLIOTT & SONS
Granville Works, Sheffield
Cutlery, Silver, and Electro-Plate
Joseph Elliot and Sons (Sheffield) Limited was
established as a private limited company in 1927. The
company's history however dates back to the Joseph
Elliot and Sons business that was founded in 1795 at 4
Hollis Croft, Sheffield. In 1921 Joseph Elliot and Sons
was incorporated by Sheffield Cutlery Manufacturers
Limited. The firm was active at Hollis Croft (until
1923), Spital Works, Spital St. (until 1926), Granville
Works, 1 Sylvester St., Sheffield (from 1926) changing
its name to Cutlery Agencies Limited. In the early 1970s
the firm was taken by J Dewsnap Bowler Limited,
Sylvester Works, Sylvester Street, Sheffield
"A WORD per MONTH"
origins of these cups are 'Jungfraubecher' made in
Germany (Nuremberg) around 1565 and in use for all of the 17th
century. The cup has the look of a young girl with a
wide long skirt in the form of a cup supporting over her
head a smaller swivelling cup.
The silver wager cup was created for use in wedding's
banquets, where the spouse drank wine from the bigger
cup and offered his bride to drink from the smaller,
avoiding pouring out even a drop of its content....
"A SILVERSMITH per MONTH"
REED & BARTON: YEAR'S MARK SYMBOLS
The Reed & Barton story
began in 1824, when Isaac Babbitt created a new metal
alloy - "Britannia metal" - in his Taunton,
Massachusetts pewter shop.
Babbitt joined forces with craftsmen Henry G. Reed and
Charles E. Barton to produce this innovative, higher
quality pewter ware. When Babbitt encountered financial
difficulties, Reed & Barton offered to take control and
began manufacturing products under their own names. The
fledgling company's goods reflected uncompromising
standards of excellence, starting with its initial
silverplate products and extending to the exquisite
sterling silver creations that resulted from the silver
discoveries of the late 1800s....
"A BOOK ON MY SHELF"
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:
HISTORIA DAS MARCAS E CONTRASTES
metais nobres em Portugal
Maria Nogueira Pinto
Medialivros Actividades Editoriais, s.a., Lisboa,
"A CREST per MONTH"
In this column we present images and
descriptions of Crests and Mottoes of British, Irish and
Scottish families as engraved on silver items.
This armorial is engraved
on a pair of Old Sheffield Plate sauce tureens made by
Creswick, dating to around 1820 and is unusual in being
a personal rather than a family design. The armorial has
been traced as belonging to Lt Col Sir Thomas Reade CB
whose family originated from Congleton in Cheshire.
He served in the Napoleonic wars commanding gunboats
protecting Sicily and later was part of the garrison on
the island of St Helena where he was present at the
death of Napoleon in exile in 1821. Afterwards he served
as British Consul in Tunis until his death in 1849.
The main part of the armorial is the shield containing a
cross and sheaves of wheat which belonged to the Reade
family. At the bottom of the armorial three decorations
are hanging. These were all granted to Sir Thomas
himself . They consist of the Companion (military) of
the Order of the Bath (CB), the Order of the Turkish
Crescent, founded in 1799 and the Illustrious Royal
Order of St. Ferdinand and Merit, an Order of Knighthood
of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies.
The motto FIDEI ET MERITO unusually is that of the St
Ferdinand Order rather than of the Reade family.
Closing our July 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 Bruno Bruni, Simon
Buxton, Allen Carlson, Michael Carter, Ludo D’Haese, Jayne Dye,
Piero Eduardo, Geldolph Everts, Mario Galasso, Christophe Ginter,
Stewart Hersey, Eddy Huysmans, Jean-Christophe Malguy,Claudio
Morelli, Eddie Robinson, Les Salvage, Haroune Toumani, Oskar M. Zurell for their
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
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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