Hi, welcome to the forum.
Nice pair of Empire style candle sticks with the (hall)marks Kingdom of Holland (1806-1810). When the "Lowlands" were occupied by the French (Napoleonic era). The year letter a
used after 7th October 1807 till 18 March 1809. Oval with cross bar, the Assay office mark city of Utrecht, used (1807-1810). The Crown, the standard mark, for 11 Penningen & 5 grein or 934.028 fineness. The maker's mark V:V
under a star for: Nicolaas van Voorst, born Utrecht 1758, registered silversmith in Utrecht 1782-1820 (died). Maker's mark used by Nicolaas; NVV
and an Oval
with arrow in the middle (1812/1820).
The Hatchet: the 1853 duty mark for old silver objects of national origin returned to the trade. In accordance with several resolutions with further clarifications, this mark was intended for objects with the hallmarks ( standard marks) of the ancient Netherlands silversmiths companies
.The use of this mark was abolished in 1927 for two reasons: 1st . The lack of knowledge of the old marks has caused this mark to be sometimes struck on old foreign objects. 2nd. this mark had often been counterfeited and used to give objects an antique aura. The difference with the older French hatchet mark, the French mark was struck tax free on objects with valid hallmarks. The Dutch hatchet is a duty mark, it does not guarantee any specific fineness.