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Silver Collector Forums

Confusing marks on spoon. Is it a fake?

Hi. I cannot work out the marks on this spoon. It has no duty mark. It appears to be an Edinburgh product of about 1800. The maker’s initials are FH inside a circle but doesn’t appear to be Francis Howden whose mark is rectangular. It could be the mark of Francis Howard of Sheffield.
Silver Spoon mini.jpg

Yes, it’s Francis Howard Ltd so has to be 20th century. The date letter is the gothic Q for 1971.

Hi, I wonder why Edinburgh marks are visible, unless I am mistaken about these.

Your spoon has Edinburgh marks because Howards registered their mark there. They also registered at Birmingham, Glasgow and London as well as Sheffield. I’m not sure whether they had factories/workshops in all those places but it should always be borne in mind that what we loosely call a maker’s mark should more strictly be called a sponsor’s mark. This also covers silver which is made by other companies on behalf of the sponsor and also imported silver.

Thank you Moderator. Sadly, the piece is 200 years younger than I hoped for, when I started researching.