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Silver Collector Forums

Help a complete newbie out please?

Dear All,

My name is Kevin and I am a complete newbie at collecting silver. I have been fscinated by the history, the objects themselves are sometimes quite beautiful and it is affordable at any level.


Now I have the time to start my new hobby and I have bought a set of six teaspoons?

I have had much pleasure in identifying the hallmarks.

Would you help me out by answering a couple of questions please?

Looking at the V for 1938 how can I tell that it is not the V for 1841 which is very similar? Is it because, according to my handbook, there is an extra mark for the older version?

I am also trying to identify the maker.

It looks like EFB to me but I can find no maker of that name.

Is this common or have I read the initials incorrectly.

Thank you in advance.

sheffield 1938 small.jpg

Hello Kevin -

Look at the shape of the impression the date mark is in. The shape for 1938 matches yours, there is a point at the bottom and the top corners are cut off. The shape of the 1841 mark is more squarish (without the point at the bottom). As you look at the list of date marks (obviously you already know it’s from Sheffield) check out how both the “font” of the letters and the shape of the impression changes over time. In this case, where the form of the letters is so similar, it is the difference in the impression that will really help.

Enjoy your new hobby!! :smiley: I’m sure someone will come along soon who knows a great deal more about English silver, and will be able to ID that maker’s mark for you.


Dear Lisa,

That is really very helpful.

Thank you.


Apart from the shape of the shield/cartouche and the letter the other big difference between an 1841 hallmark and one for 1938 is that the earlier one will have a duty mark (Queen Victoria’s head) to show that duty has been paid on the silver. Duty marks should normally be on silver dated from 1784 to 1890.

The maker is E F Braham Ltd of Birmingham.

Thank you. I obviously need a more comprehensive directory of makers.

Can you recommend a book or website please?