I'm in the early stages of collecting silver folding fruit knives. Recently I acquired a silver folding fruit knife with three hallmarks. The middle one seems clearly to be the Birmingham anchor assay symbol. The first hallmark at first glance seems to be the duty mark of Queen Victoria--except, the face is looking right, when all my sources tell me it should be looking left. The third hallmark (counting from the bottom) is hard to make out, even using a loupe, but it appears to be some sort of bird (--a raven? a grouse? a pigeon?) My research so far suggests this could be a journeyman's mark, since it was a common practice for a time for master silversmiths to farm out certain tasks in the construction of knives to journeyman, who would have each their own identifying stamp. My questions:
1- Can anyone explain what could account for the reversed Victoria duty stamp? (One suspicion I'm having: American silver fruit knife makers most typically made them by modifying the castings of knife/fork/spoon handles, as this one appears to be. Could this be an American forgery, passing itself off as English?)
2- Is that third hallmark probably that of a journeyman? Or does it have another meaning? Thanks!