Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

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Corrien
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Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Wed Jan 29, 2014 7:49 am

Who can help me with the hallmarks and origine (Russia?) of this fork and spoon.
Image
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oel
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:22 pm

Hi Corrien, welcome to the forum.

The marks from left to right; French period (1810-1813) ET crowned (ETranger=foreign), crowned O, duty mark used for a few months in in 1807, during Kingdom of Holland(1806-1810), date letter perhaps; 94 in a rectangle, followed by a crowned V; duty mark for foreign and other untaxed objects for large items, used 1814-1893.However to make sure please check if the letter 'V' appears in the shield.
Pentagram in a circle, not for Maastricht, needs further investigation, followed by the makers’ mark V.H in a rectangle. I will let you know if I find more information about the pentagram, date letter and maker’s mark.
For more information about the mentioned marks see;
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=32028
and for the ET mark:
http://www.925-1000.com/Ffrench_marks.html


Oel.

Corrien
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Wed Jan 29, 2014 2:53 pm

Hello Oel,

Thank you for your quick reply.
The V appears in the crowned V but in this hallmark they struck the flowery V because the tax was payed.
I hope you can find out more about the other hallmarks. I thought it was 94 in the rectangle to, thats wy I was thinking it could be Russian, 94 zolotniki?

Corrien

Corrien
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:00 pm

Image crowned V struck with flowery V
Image

oel
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:11 pm

Hi Corrien,

Could you please show us some close ups of; the ‘94’ mark, close ups of the marks on the spoon and marks on fork, so we can compare. Could we also see a close up of the engraved names/letters on spoon & fork handle?
The five- point star or pentagram in oval does look like the Spanish hallmark used 1934-present for silver fineness minimum .915
See: http://www.925-1000.com/foreign_marks3.html
I do not believe Russian made, 94 zolotniki = 979.17/1000 fineness, unusual high fineness for utensils but you could have the fork and spoon tested (Waarborg Gouda) also the Russian town & assaymarks are not showing. For Russian rules on hallmarking see;
http://www.925-1000.com/Frussia.html

I believe the‘94’ mark could be damaged makers'mark, like "ST' and if so the V.H mark could be a (Spanish?) retailers'mark. The marks are added at different time periods and perhaps struck over other marks. Indeed Dutch taxmark crowned V, not a flowery V but struck with what looks like a damaged punch mark, have both fork & spoon the same damaged crowned V mark?

Oel

Corrien
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Thu Jan 30, 2014 6:01 am

Hello Oel,

I am sure that the flowery V is struck into the crowned V mark.
See photo:
Image
I don't think it is Spanish because the crowned V mark is struck over the pentagram mark. And the crowned V is used untill 1894 and the Spanish pentagram used after 1934.
See photo:
Image
The 94 hallmark on the fork is not as good as on the spoon.
Image
And the initials engraved in spoon and fork are JAvH
Image

Corrien
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Thu Jan 30, 2014 7:28 am

I have made a new photo of the flowery V mark on the spoon.
Image

oel
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Thu Jan 30, 2014 7:45 am

Hello Corrien,

Again it proves that clear and more images should be shown straight away.
The engraved letters if; JAvH certainly Dutch or German origin.

The crowned v tax mark was meant for large items and the small flowery v for small work, most probably the assayer/tax duty officer corrected a mistake and re-punched the crowned v with the flowery v, the instructions on the use of tax marks often were not clear or correctly understood.

The’94’ could be something else and not a number; it could be an anchor with rope but…? Please rotate the mark and judge yourself. However it could be; 94 or 46 (rotated)

The pentagram, to my knowledge not a Dutch or Belgium city mark, if not for Spain, perhaps German and could it symbolize a drudenfuss?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drudenfuss#Drudenfuss
I have asked around and waiting for replies and will let you know if anything pops up.


Oel.

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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Fri Jan 31, 2014 1:55 pm

Hi, I received information from; Zilvermuseum Sterckshof Provencie Antwerpen http://www.zilvermuseum.be
The head of collections and research wrote me by email in Dutch and I translated:
I have seen the combination of V.H in horizontal rectangle with star/pentagram in circle before and in the documentation of the museum found reference to a pair of sugar casters, auctioned at Christie’s Amsterdam on November 16, 1999. Only one of the identical casters was marked with VH in horizontal rectangle, star/pentagram in circle and 98 (86?) in horizontal rectangle. At the time still labelled mid-18th century.

Lot Description

A pair of Dutch silver sugar casters
Maker's mark VH, town mark a star, only one caster marked, possibly Southern Netherlands, mid 18th Century
Spirally fluted, the high domed base rising to a baluster-shaped body, the upper part pierced with flower-sprays, with baluster finial
15cm. (5.7/8in.) high
Marked on reverse
322gr. (2)
Image

In 1999 the experts of Christie’s wrote; possible Southern Netherlands, could that be Maastricht?

The quality of the shakers and fork & spoon is obvious and made by skilled big town silversmith/shop. Looking at both dates; 98(86?) and 94(46?) fork & spoon, we can assume 98 and 94 to be right and to be for; 1794 and 1798, although it could be noticed that the rectangle and figure 94 do look weak and could have been struck with a 'home made' date-punch mark.

Herewith some facts: Maastricht, being an Old Catholic stronghold and perhaps even the oldest settlement and city in the Netherlands. The important strategic location of Maastricht resulted during the ages in the construction of an impressive array of fortifications around the city.
In 1579, when Spain ruled the Netherlands, the city of Maastricht was in the hands of Dutch rebels. In 1579, on the 12th of March, the Spanish General Alexander Farnese started to lay siege to the city with his army consisting of 20,000 men. The same year, on June 29th, the city was conquered and ransacked for more than three days, looting by the Spanish soldiers, citizen were raped and killed, blood and treasure lost including most of Maastricht’s silver. Famiano Strada (Rome, 1572 - there, June 9, 1649) a Jesuit priest, historian and moralist, estimated the value of the booty, more than one million guilders.
Maastricht was occupied by the Spanish troops for 53 years. In 1632 the city was conquered by Frederick Henry the protestant Prince of Orange. His victory brought a certain degree of stability and introduced a new era of religious tolerance. The citizens of Maastricht had suffered tremendously during all sieges of their town but now Protestants and Catholics could coexist in some sort of harmony. In 1634 Maastricht came under tread of another Spanish siege and church & citizens were summoned by the Magistrate of Maastricht to hand over their silver & gold, in order to make coins, to pay for the extra costs to defend the city.
French troops occupied Maastricht from 1673 to 1678. From 1748 till 1749 the French once again conquered the city. The French took the city one last time in 1794 and Maastricht was annexed to the First French Empire. In 1795 the bourgeoisie of Maastricht were forced to pay a very high war tax or if they could not comply to hand over their gold & silver and in 1796 the municipal officials of Maastricht were ordered to hand over all their official silver to the French.
We also know that the garrison town Maastricht granted special rights to members belonging to the garrison. Garrison members could start a trade without permission of the local trade guilds. The members of the gold & silver guild of Maastricht made severe complains to the Authorities of Maastricht and the Garrison Commandant about silver & goldsmith shops started up by garrison members and called it unfair competition and questioned the fineness of the used alloys and so on.

Question; how did those non guild members marked their silver? Non guild members could not use the official guild mark being the star of Maastricht but could use a 'pseudo guild' mark being a star/pentagram; symbolic for the five wounds of Jesus and known to be used in military logos.
Could the initials V.H stand for a catholic, non-guild registered ‘free’ silversmith living in Maastricht, around the turn of the 18th century, a time of great transition? When the French occupied Maastricht in November 1794, the Guilds were declared abolished but temporarily remain in existence as destroyed guilds until 1807 with the total dismantling of the guilds, and the introduction of office marks and uniform date letter.

Again we have absolutely no proof that the star/pentagram is a non-official mark for Maastricht and the above is only food for thoughts.


Oel.

Corrien
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Fri Jan 31, 2014 3:50 pm

Hello Oel,

What a story. Thank you for your work.

There is an other coincidence, I bougt this fork and spoon in a Maastricht flea-market last weekend?????????

I can imagine that there is no Maastricht archive that has documents about these pseudo silversmiths/shop owners.

Again thank you and Best Regards,
Corrien

Corrien
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Sat Feb 01, 2014 7:06 am

Hello Oel,

More food for thoughts!

When the Christies expert mentions "possibly Southern Netherlands" he speaks about the Lower Maas, Meuse Inferieure or Beneden Maas, region.
They were occupied by the French in 1794 and started to use the French silver hallmarks in 1798 with a departemental essayers office in Maastricht until 1814.
This was a new department, what happened with the hallmarks from the guild during the periode 1794-1798, and what happened when a new silversmith setteled in this region.
Had they temporary markings?
When I look at the Lower Maas region silversmith markings by R. Stuyck, I find an identical H.V ihallmark in a rectangle as in the spoon and fork. This H.V is used by Hubertus Vroonen (Vroenen?) from 1798 to 1814. Stuyck also mentions that Vroonen used the same hallmark during the Dutch Regime?
Could the spoon and fork be made by Hubertus Vroonen using a temporary hallmark in the period 1794-98?
Another coincidence again is that the Sugar casters sold by Christies dates back to 1798 an the fork and spoon to 1794, exactly the same time period as the above story?????

Do you, or one of your colleagues, know more about what happened between 1794 and 1798?????

Regards,
Corrien

oel
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Sat Feb 01, 2014 1:54 pm

Hello Corrien,

In 1795 The Dutch Republic or the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands (The Low Countries) and The Austrian Netherlands, the Prince Bishopric of Liege, Luxemburg and the present Limburg province are conquered and occupied by the French armies and are annexed by the French Republic.
In 1795 Proclamation of the Batavian Republic 1795-1806, a French satellite state and the hallmarks of the French Republic (1795-1804) were introduced. In 1806 the self-crowned emperor Napoleon Bonaparte forces the Batavian Republic to accept his brother Louis as King of Holland, Kingdom of Holland 1806-1810. In 1810 Napoleon unhappy with his brother Louis, Napoleon decides to annexe the Kingdom of Holland and to become part of the so called French Empire (1804-1815). In 1813 Napoleons defeat at Leipzig and November 1813 partly liberation of the Low Countries followed by a few years of turmoil and Napoleons final defeat at Waterloo in 1815.

In 1798 the Dutch guilds which existed for ages, were declared abolished but temporarily remain in existence as destroyed guilds until 1807 with the total dismantling of the guilds, and the introduction of office marks and uniform date letter.
For example Amsterdam continued the use of the guild marks up till 1807; crowned pole with three Andreas crosses, lion rampant in a crowned shield for 1st standard of silver and date letter Y for 1807. Take in mind a lot of the old guild records and copper plates with the date letters and silversmiths’ marks have been destroyed, sometimes by mistake and small disasters like; accidental city explosions &fires occurred during the ages.
But the biggest disaster was the decision of interior minister Gogel in 1807 with the introduction of the new hallmarks, by ordering all guild records and copper plates to be destroyed. That is why today, we have a lot of unknown makers’ marks and doubts about certain guild marks and date letters used.

Back to Maastricht, according to the books Maastricht probably continued the use of the guild city mark; the star and date letter A in a shield from 1792 up till around 1797(?). In November 1794 Maastricht became part of the First French Empire and had to follow the French hallmark rules. However it was a time of great transition and uncertainties and I believe new punches had to be made in Paris, one of the reasons the guild, although legally "dead", were allowed to continue to use the ‘old’ hallmarks. The French army and administrators in Maastricht had more important issues to settle and it takes time and thoughts before new rules can be implemented. No emails and plains were used only ink & paper and legs & horses.
Money =silver & gold =power and makes people including silversmith’s creative.
Maker’s marks, Guild marks and date letters are traceable responsibility marks; who made it, where has it been assayed and who performed the assay because if no good alloy has been used we like to know; who can be held liable to pay up for the damage & fines. But if the buyer trusted the silversmith, he or she could buy directly of this silversmith, without having it assayed or paying taxes, not allowed by the guild authorities & revenue authorities, and to make it all a little bit “official” the silversmith could add some extra marks, like old (pseudo) marks. So often we find good quality silver; unmarked or makers 'mark only or with pseudo marks.
The guilds were no democratic institutions, guilds made their own rules based upon tradition, birth right and power games. New comers sometimes were kept out by charging high registration fees, or an experience silversmith from another city, applying for a maker’s mark, had to work first under a Master of the guild, as a so called apprentice for 2 years and during this time had to mark his output with the mark of his master. The French overruled the Guilds and a newcomer, if proven to be an able silversmith, could apply for a master mark. However the new master mark had to be according to French rules, in the shape of a lozenge. In short it was not easy to register a new silversmith during 1794-1798 but again people are creative.
At the moment I have no access to my library including “R. Stuyck, Belgische Zilvermerken” next week I will let you know and yes I am aware of the dates .

Enjoy the weekend.

Oel.

oel
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Tue Feb 04, 2014 4:45 pm

Hi Corrien,

The area Beneden —Maas/ Meuse-Inférieure ("Lower Meuse"; Dutch: Nedermaas or Beneden-Maas);
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meuse-Inf%C3%A9rieure

Image
The maker’s mark on your spoon & fork reads; V.H in rectangle and not H.V in a rectangle.
The maker’s mark of Hubertus Vroonen used before and during the French occupation 1794-1814 of the Beneden-Maas area; H.V in rectangle see; Belgische Zilvermerken R. Stuyck.
In short Hubertus Vroonen possessed one and the same maker’s mark during the Dutch regime and during the French occupation.
I believe the maker’s mark on your spoon & fork to be an unknown maker’s mark.


Oel.

Corrien
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby Corrien » Tue Feb 04, 2014 6:39 pm

Hello Oel,

My mistake, sorry.

Best Regards,
Corrien.

hub
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Joined: Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:28 am

Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby hub » Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:53 am

Hello Corrien,

by accident I saw your conversation about Dutch silver hallmarks
The initials VH are on a spoon of 1799 and are probably of Willem van Hees from Tongeren (Belgium)
The star seems to be a self created city mark for Maastricht because of the French occupation he had to let the silver assayed in Maastricht
See :

http://www.zilver.nl/zilverkeuren/resultaat
Choose "een ster" by "figuur" and you can see the picture of the marks mentioned

This is in line with the story below

kind regards
Hub

oel
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Wed Apr 15, 2015 6:38 pm

Hi Hub, welcome to the forum.

The city of Tongeren (today- Belgium) being 22 km away from the city of Maastricht (today-The Netherlands)

In 1795 The Dutch Republic or the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands (The Low Countries) and The Austrian Netherlands, the Prince Bishopric of Liege, Luxemburg and the present Limburg province are conquered and occupied by the French armies and are annexed by the French Republic.

In 1795 Proclamation of the Batavian Republic 1795-1806, a French satellite state and the hallmarks of the French Republic (1795-1804) were introduced.
The city of Tongeren (today- Belgium) being 22 km away from the city of Maastricht (today-The Netherlands). During the French occupying period in the year 1798 the first assay offices are opened in Paris and Versaillles. After the French example all professional companies in the Batavian Republic are abolished. For the purpose of assaying and hallmarking the goldsmith’s companies may temporarily remain in existence as so called suppressed or destroyed guilds. The exclusivity and the admission requirements are however abolished.
In the year 1799 the Maastricht and Roermond assay offices are declared to be open on October 22nd 1798. The opposition of the goldsmiths however causes a delay until mid-1799.

Indeed somewhere during 1795-1799 a silversmith in Tongeren should have assayed his work, according to French rules, in the newly established assay office of Maastricht. And yes perhaps during the uncertain transition period may have ‘hallmarked’ his own work and wrongly using the old city guild mark; the star of Maastricht. I have asked a Belgian expert for comments and wait for his replies.

Best,

Oel.

oel
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Re: Dutch hallmarks on foreign fork and spoon

Postby oel » Tue Aug 27, 2019 1:50 pm

It took a while herewith the final update.
The pentagram in a round shield is the maker’s mark of Andreas van Hoeck born 3 August 1757, died 12 November 1836. Shopkeeper cum silversmith in the city of Helmond, province of Brabant. The city of Helmond never had an official town silver guild. Andreas marked his own work.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helmond
Andreas van Hoeck prior 1811 used at least two known maker’s mark, the pentagram and V.H or VH in a rectangle.
Below a page of De Stavelij published in 2012 see 16
Image
De Stavelij:
http://www.stavelij.nl/

Another example of his marks:
Image

NB. At the end of the 18th century, the silver guild city of Breda, province of Brabant, around 1790 Breda used the last two digits of the year in a crowned shield. Probably Andreas Hoeck marked his work the same, the last two digits of the year in a rectangle.

Gratitude; Dick Dekker



Peter.


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