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The Hallmarking Act 1973 changed on 1 January 1999 and allows articles of higher and lower standards of fineness to be sold. Consumers may now choose from a much wider range of goods but to continue to benefit from the same level of protection. Using a British Hallmark Guide How to quickly identify gold and Silver hallmarks that you see in car boot sales and markets.
From the end of the 12th century the craft of silversmith has been regulated in conformity with Royal Ordinances and Acts of the Parliament.Because of possible confusion with the Crown mark used after 1798, (as the hallmark for 18ct gold), the Sheffield assay mark was changed on January 1st 1975 for a rose.Which had incidentally, been used as the gold assay mark for Sheffield when the Assay Office was first entitled to test gold, after March 1st 1904.The hallmarking of Irish silver began towards the middle of the 17th century.The mark of origin is the Harp Crowned and it appears with a date letter and maker’s mark. Simply learn to recognise those Antique Silver Hallmarks.
If they offended again, a limb would be hacked off and, until the 1720’s, the death penalty was the usual sentence meted out to persistent offenders.