Need help with French maker's mark

MARK IMAGE REQUIRED
monte100
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2013 9:20 am

Need help with French maker's mark

Postby monte100 » Sun Nov 10, 2019 7:03 am

Hi,

OK, I give up! I have used all my resources and still cannot find this maker's mark. It is on a large sterling silver serving tray which carries the Minerva mark with the figure 1 top right so I know it is French and 950/100 silver.

The first part is simple as it is Ste which, I believe, stands for Société but it is not the mark for Société Parisienne d'orfèvrerie which has an anchor and this one seems to have some type of plant.

[url][url=https://postimg.cc/Cz15Mrgd]Image[/url][/url]

Anybody got any ideas?

Thank you

monte100
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2013 9:20 am

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby monte100 » Sun Nov 10, 2019 7:07 am

Oops, I put the image upside down - sorry

Image

JayT
contributor
Posts: 700
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:45 pm

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby JayT » Sun Nov 10, 2019 12:55 pm

Hello
First, France didn’t use the sterling standard (925) until 1972, to be in compliance with European Union regulations. You don’t show the Minerva mark, so it is impossible to say if your object dates prior to 1972 or has the post-1972 Minerva head, indicating 950 standard silver.
Second, a look at Minerva might let you know if this is a provincial object or a Paris object. The province will be indicated by a symbol under the chin. By the mark you show alone, it doesn’t appear to be a Paris maker.
Good luck with further research on your tray.

Zilver2
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Posts: 194
Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2011 6:37 am

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby Zilver2 » Tue Nov 12, 2019 12:43 pm

Hi,
This mark SteOM belongs to the "Société d'Orfèvrerie du Marais", prédécessor of the actual society at 1 rue Robert et Sonia Delaunay, 75011 Paris.
Orfèvrerie du Marais (Succ.), 30 rue des Gravilliers, 75003 Paris is the latest goldsmith in this line.
Kind regards
Zilver2

monte100
Posts: 27
Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2013 9:20 am

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby monte100 » Sat Nov 16, 2019 12:05 pm

Thank you so much Zilver2 you have saved what was left of my hair :)

MGArgent
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Posts: 163
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:25 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby MGArgent » Fri Feb 12, 2021 2:51 am

Hi Zilver2,

Thanks for sharing this information. I recently came into 3 piece tea or coffee service with this mark and am wondering if you have the active working period for this mark?

So far I have found a few pieces with general attributions to the 20th century, and 1-2 saying late 19th century.

monte100, the 'plant' you mention has been described as a tuft of reeds on a dealer's site:

French:
Société d'Orfèvrerie du Marais : Ste OM avec touffe de roseaux


Translation:
Société d'Orfèvrerie du Marais: Ste OM with tuft of reeds

JayT
contributor
Posts: 700
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:45 pm

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby JayT » Fri Feb 12, 2021 10:00 am

The Société des Orfèvres du Marais was established on 1 January 1963, filed for bankruptcy in 2015, and closed definitively on 4 January 2018. The company was originally located in the area of Paris called Le Marais, or marsh, drained in the 17thC. Thus reeds as a symbol for the company is an appropriate mnemonic for Le Marais.
Hope this helps.

MGArgent
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Posts: 163
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:25 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby MGArgent » Fri Feb 12, 2021 12:25 pm

Thanks JayT, this is great information and very interesting history regarding the area.

In the case of the tea/coffee service, the Minerve has a "1" in the upper right corner indicating it was made prior to the change in 1972 (or 1963-1972).

Thanks again, it is appreciated!

JayT
contributor
Posts: 700
Joined: Thu Feb 18, 2010 1:45 pm

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby JayT » Fri Feb 12, 2021 1:08 pm

You're welcome.

You can find a lot of general info about the marais in Paris by asking Mr. Google. Briefly: many silversmiths worked there in the 17thC to be close to their wealthy and aristocratic clients who were settling the area as it was developed. After the Revolution, the area fell into disuse as a residential quarter, and became the centre for light industry and artisans. Many silversmiths continued to have premises in the marais, including such notables as Puiforcat. The final development of the marais took place beginning in the 1960s as the area was gentrified and the old 17thC buildings restored. Rents went way, way up, pushing out artisans, including silversmiths. To my knowledge there was only one silversmith left in the marais until recently when he moved a bit east nearer the Bastille to a building with other artisans.

Regards.

MGArgent
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Posts: 163
Joined: Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:25 pm
Location: Canada

Re: Need help with French maker's mark

Postby MGArgent » Sun Feb 14, 2021 1:06 am

I find this very interesting, thank you for sharing this!


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