Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

PHOTOS REQUIRED - marks + item
jojo 1
Posts: 37
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:38 am

Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby jojo 1 » Sat Sep 08, 2012 9:24 am

Hi there,
this owl caddy is really beautifully detailed - it has been tested and is at least 900 silver. The only mark is on the base - T90. Does anybody know what this mark means - I was told once that the 'T' may stand for Tola - I can't seem to find any information about it. I am unsure about the age of this piece. I would love to know the country of origin. It is about 8 inches high. I didn't really know where to post this topic! Hopefully someone can help... Best wishes, Jo
Image

Image

davidross
contributor
Posts: 460
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 1:58 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby davidross » Sat Sep 08, 2012 10:41 am

Hello

The mark looks to me more like a mid-20th century German or Dutch silverplate mark than any Middle Eastern mark. Besides, it would seem highly unlikely that such a large piece would have no other markings if it were solid silver.

My apologies if I am mistaken, but I believe the piece get a more definite identification if your query is moved to the "European-Other Countries" section.

Regards

David R

jojo 1
Posts: 37
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:38 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby jojo 1 » Sat Sep 08, 2012 11:05 am

Hi David R,
Thank you for your comment! The only thing I do know is that it's not silverplate. It has been properly tested by a silversmith. It just doesn't look European to me - I may well be wrong!
Thank you for taking the time to reply...
Best wishes, Jo.

dognose
Site Admin
Posts: 40393
Joined: Thu Dec 29, 2005 12:53 pm
Location: England

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby dognose » Sat Sep 08, 2012 1:07 pm

Hi,

I hate to go against David's thoughts, as I have the utmost respect for his knowledge, but this, to me, looks like the excellent work found in the Kutch region of India. It's such a shame that many of these pieces are not marked by the silversmith.

As for the Tola system of standards, although I seen these marks, I've never been sure of their meaning, and hopefully this post will prompt an answer from someone.

Trev.

jojo 1
Posts: 37
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:38 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby jojo 1 » Sat Sep 08, 2012 2:44 pm

Hi Trev,
thank you for your post, I actually have an Indian tea set - I had never thought to compare them before, but the style does look very similar!
Image


It is disappointing that the makers do not sign some of their pieces - here is a photo of another owl caddy also tested for at least 900 silver. Although he is nowhere near as refined as the other - he is charming! The piece is totally unmarked.
It is great to have the feedback, I am very grateful for your input. If anybody can provide any further information, that would be great!
Best wishes, Jo.
Image

davidross
contributor
Posts: 460
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 1:58 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby davidross » Sat Sep 08, 2012 6:10 pm

I happily defer to Trev's attribution.

Kutch had not occurred to me at first glance, but the "trunk" upon which the owl perches does look Indian on closer examination of the motifs. My knowledge of this region is limited, and most of the Kutch I have examined is much busier in design and is either unmarked altogether or marked "SILVER," "ST SIL" (all caps) or something to that effect rather than with a number.

Indeed, it is a shame that the vast majority of Indian silver is unmarked and therefore still relatively unresearched.

Best regards,

David

oel
co-admin
Posts: 3674
Joined: Wed Mar 21, 2007 8:16 pm
Location: The Netherlands

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby oel » Sat Sep 08, 2012 7:27 pm

Hi,
The 10 tola bar used to be a pub in Dubai.
I found this on the internet.
tola is a traditional Indian unit of mass, now standardised as 0.375 troy ounces (11.6638038 gram).

One tola was traditionally the weight of 100 tola seeds, and its exact weight varied according to locality. The tola approximated to the weight of the silver rupee coin issued by the British East India Company, and so under British rule the tola became standardised at the same weight as this coin, that is 180 grains/0.375 ounces troy (11.6638038 grams).

Although the tola has been officially replaced by metric units, it is still in current use, and is a popular denomination for gold bullion bars in India, Pakistan and Singapore, with a ten tola bar being the most commonly traded.

It was also used in Aden and Zanzibar. In the latter, 1 tola was equivalent to 11.398 grams.
therefore'
10 tola equals to 116.638 grams

T90 could perhaps mean; 1 Tola contains 90% pure silver but this is only an estimated guess.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tola_%28unit%29"
http://www.taxfreegold.co.uk/goldtolabars.html"
http://www.goldratenepal.com/"

jojo 1
Posts: 37
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:38 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby jojo 1 » Sun Sep 09, 2012 7:40 am

Hi Oel,
thank you for taking the time to research this. I think this is probably the closest explanation for these marks. I am very appreciative of everyones efforts!
Best wishes, Jo.

rauls
contributor
Posts: 104
Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2011 11:04 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby rauls » Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:34 am

T90 is a modern mark used in Cambodia. If you go there, you will found items with this mark easily and the price is low. They are hand made, but most people think they are silverplated on cupronickel.

Noble Metals
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Dec 17, 2009 12:13 am
Location: North Carolina

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby Noble Metals » Tue Sep 25, 2012 6:42 pm

I have to write in support of rauls last assesment - I have pieces from Cambodia with the T90 stamp and the same leafy-floral motif. Mid 20th C and older have higher chance of being 90% silver; I have more recent items marked T90 that are silver plated so it is not a guarantee of content. The finer workmanship in your owl would make me think it is solid silver and older in age maybe mid 20th c. Cambodia has a long history of making boxes in animal motifs mostly for betel nut sets and the tourist trade. This is the first owl I've seen and is of very good workmanship requiring a great deal of skill and time to create - a truely unique piece.

jojo 1
Posts: 37
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2011 9:38 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby jojo 1 » Sat Sep 29, 2012 2:56 pm

Hi Rauls and Noble Metals,
thank you both for your comments - now I feel I have a definitive origin for him! The workmanship in this owl is really beautiful, so I'm very pleased to have learned a little more about him! Thanks to all for your time and help. Best wishes, Jo.

Kesterha
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 6:06 pm

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby Kesterha » Mon Dec 19, 2016 6:18 pm

It does look Cambodian to me.
I have travelled extensively around Asia, incl India, Burma, Bhutan, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, China, Malaysia.. And I have found Cambodia to use this (agreed Indian influenced) style. The owl is a typical design. They may come in little boxes used among other things for storing the areca or betel nut.
The stamp T90 might refer (especially if the silver tested for 900) to 90% of silver units in the allow.
I own some objects (fruit etc) where I have the same stamps and purity of silver.

marynation
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:15 am

Re: Does anybody now the origin of this owl caddy?

Postby marynation » Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:20 am

I have a piece of Indian silver with T90 on it. I am pretty certain it is indian as my ancestors came over from india with it in about 1924. It is an inkpot with tigers on it.


Return to “Middle East”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests