EUROPEAN COUNTRIES SILVER AND GOLD HALLMARKS|
A silver or gold object that is to be sold commercially is, in most countries, stamped with one or more hallmarks indicating the purity of the metal and the mark of the manufacturer or silversmith
The word "HALLMARK" derives from the fact that, since the 16th century, precious metals were sent to the London Goldsmiths' Hall for testing to ensure that the correct standard of silver had been used. The Goldsmiths' Hall was the headquarters of the Goldsmiths' Company and the home of the Assay Office.
In some countries, the testing of precious metal objects and marking of purity is controlled by a national assay office.
Depending on the national legislation the use of hallmarks may be compulsory, voluntary or provided by a manufacturer's declaration.
The Belgian hallmarking system is organized on a voluntary base.
1: .934 fineness, 1814-1831 2: .833 fineness, 1814-1831 and Assay Office Gand/Gent (D) 3: warranty mark, 1814-1831 4: 'recense' 1831 5: .950 fineness, 1831-1868 6: .800 fineness, 1831-1868 7: warranty mark, 1831-1868 8: Assay Office Liège/Luik (D), 1831-1868 9: .900 and .800 fineness, voluntary mark, 1869-1942
From 1942 to 1990 silverware was marked on a voluntary basis with a four-petal flower and the fineness mark featured the letter A followed by the fineness indication within an oval frame.
Silver fineness was .900 and .800 (1942-1990, letter code A), raised to .925 and .835 after 1990 (letter code AG) but actually various other fineness marks are used on Belgian silver (e.g. A830, A835, 950M)
.800 fineness and Walraevens & Cie maker's mark
.830 fineness and J. Roosen, Bruxelles maker's mark (note the use of A830 mark)
.835 fineness Léon Picquot, Welkenraedt, maker's mark (note the use of A835 mark)
.950 fineness and Cie de joailleri et orfevrerie Altenloh, 1 Place Royale, Bruxelles maker's mark (note the use of 950M mark)
BELGIUM MARKS PAGE
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