There is one assay office at Vienna. Cyprian assay office[ edit ] There is one assay office at Aradippou.
The Fallacy of the "Maker's Mark" Before sending an item to be assayed and hallmarked at a British assay office a person must first register their details with the assay office they want to use.
The reason for this is pretty obvious - the assay office needs Edinburgh assay office know who to charge for their services, where to return the items, and who to hold responsible and punish if an item is found to be sub-standard, which in earlier times included sentence to the pillory.
This person is called the "sponsor", which in this context means the person who takes responsibility for the items submitted.
The sponsor does not need to be someone directly involved in making the items that they submit for hallmarking. An item will not be hallmarked unless it carries a sponsor's mark, this is a legal requirement. At one time the sponsor or maker of the item stamped the mark, but now the assay office will hold a punch on behalf of a sponsor and stamp the sponsor's mark.
This is how my work is marked, my punch is held at the London Assay Office. A "hallnote" submitted with work to be marked includes a declaration of where the item was made and who is the sponsor, and the sponsor's mark is struck accordingly. The details registered must include an address in Britain, and at least one punch mark.
The punch is used to mark items that are submitted to the assay office with the sponsor's mark so that the items they submit can be easily identified. The punch mark must be unique, and usually consists of a person or company's initials set within a shaped "shield".
If the initials are the same as someone already registered, details such as the shield shape will be made different so that the two marks can be distinguished. Cameo and Intaglio marks Punches were individually registered, by blackening them in a candle flame and pressing them onto paper or by striking them into a sheet of copper or lead.
If a sponsor had more than one punch, each was registered separately. When new punches were made to replace or supplement earlier ones, they were also registered, even if the design was apparently identical.
The sketch here shows the two types of punches for stamping two different styles of sponsor's marks. The cameo punch is cut away in the middle so that the initials are created in relief cameo by pressing down the metal around them, which is shown white in the sketch.
The outside shape of the nose of the punch forms the shield around the initials. This is usually called a cameo mark. The intaglio or incuse punch presses the shape of the initials into the metal. Sometimes a shield is also made, as shown in the picture, which is also pressed into the metal.
This is usually called an incuse or in-cutting mark. I have collected below a small selection of sponsor's marks from watch cases.
This is not a comprehensive collection, if a letter is missing, it is because I don't have any marks starting with that letter. If you have a mark that isn't here, please feel free to contact me via my contact me page and I will try to help you identify it.
If you want to identify many watch case sponsors marks I suggest you get hold of a copy of Philip Priestly's book on the subject. Ordering of Sponsor's Marks It is a tradition that sponsor's marks are listed alphabetically starting with the first letter of the mark rather than the surname, so my registered mark DBB is found under D for David rather than B for Boettcher.
The list of letters below is clickable to take you to the section of the page where the first letter of the mark will be found if it is present. The mark was intended to identify the master goldsmith who would "answer", i. It was never intended to identify who actually made an item.
In strict terms it was a responsibility mark but it was not given any name in the Act. A master goldsmith in the fourteenth century working under the strict rules of the goldsmiths' guild, with a small workshop and a couple of journeymen and apprentices, might naturally have been thought of as the "maker" of an item made in his workshop and, understandably but unfortunately, the mark became referred to as the "maker's mark", and some of the subsequent Acts did not clear this up.
When the power of the guilds to control who could work in precious metal declined, and with developments in trade and commerce, it became necessary to allow people such as retailers and importers to enter a mark so that they could send items for hallmarking.
This was first officially acknowledged in the Plate Offences Act, although it is obvious that the practice existed well before It has therefore been misleading for at least years to think of this mark a "maker's mark", that was never its purpose.
The Gold and Silver Wares Act,introduced the term "private mark" as a result of such considerations. Since then the term "sponsor's mark" has been adopted and is the name used for this mark in the Hallmarking Act.
Clifford says that the mark "could refer to any of the specialists involved in its production or the retailer, depending on who was responsible for taking it to the assay office", about which remark Philippa Glanville writes "The myth of the 'maker's mark' is unravelled, challenging a century of silver studies.Mark Maker Dates seen Seen on Comments (image courtesy of John Child) Beam & Co trading as Ailsa Craig Jewellery, Burness Avenue, Ayr, Scotland Web site.
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The judges were furnished with small tables covered with wax, and each one inscribed on it the initial letter of his. The assay office is privatized and the concession, given to the Inspecta Corporation, is an independent, international qualification requirements fulfilling inspection, testing, measurement and certification services provider.
Edinburgh Assay Office, Edinburgh, United Kingdom. 18 likes · 7 were here. Government Building/5(16). Austrian assay office.
There is one assay office at Vienna. Cyprian assay office. There is one assay office at Aradippou. The Law governing the marking of precious metal articles has been ratified by the House of Representatives in , creating a new semi-Governmental Organisation, the Cyprus Organisation for the Hallmarking of precious metals.