Help With South African Silver Please

PHOTOS REQUIRED - marks + item
jondon
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Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:24 pm

Help With South African Silver Please

Postby jondon » Thu Aug 07, 2014 4:41 pm

This silver bowl was purchased by a relative who was in South Africa in 1952, the year of the 400th anniversary of the founding of Cape Town.

The coin is well known, a George VI silver 5 shilling. The bowl is more of a mystery.

The marks on the bowl that I see are (I believe) left to right:
The Lion's Head, Republique Sud-Africaine.
STG is sterling silver.
The third I cannot identify. I believe that it is a P. Could this be H. F. Gattichi of Prestige Jewellers in Pretoria? His mark is the letter P but I cannot find an example.
The fourth, SAM, is South Africa Mint.

Any help in interpreting this nice little silver commemorative bowl will be appreciated greatly.

Jondon

Image
Image
Image

dognose
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Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby dognose » Thu Aug 07, 2014 5:43 pm

Hi Jondon,

Welcome to the Forum.

I agree with your findings. The 'P' mark is a date letter, however, to my knowledge, there is no resource published that gives details to identify the year.

Are you confident the letter is a 'P'? If so, then this is the first time that we attribute a year to a letter.

Here's a couple of other examples of SA date letters:

Image

Image

Image

Trev.

jondon
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Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:24 pm

Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby jondon » Fri Aug 08, 2014 10:27 am

Hello. Thanks for your welcome and information.

The mark in question could be the letter D. The the marks, and particularly the bottoms, seem to have been polished off a bit so it is hard to make out the complete shape. I need to try to get a better photo that can produce a larger and more clear image.

agphile
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Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby agphile » Fri Aug 08, 2014 11:51 am

I am not knowledgeable about relatively modern SA silver but a couple of comments occur to me. One of the marks on the bowl and in the first two of Trev's illustrations is a lion's head. This is replaced by a Springbok's head in Trev's last illustration. Now, back in 1952 S Africa was still a monarchy, as the Union of South Africa. In 1961 the country, or its then white masters, decided to become a republic and left the Commonwealth. I assume the lion must have been the mark of the Union of South Africa and the springbok is the later mark of the Republic of South Africa.

Secondly, I don't think the S A Mint served as an Assay Office so I imagine SAM is their sponsor's mark indicating that the mint commissioned and marketed the bowl.

With any luck one of our S African members will spot this thread and be able to add something more definitive.

jondon
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:24 pm

Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby jondon » Mon Aug 25, 2014 5:50 pm

From an experienced source in Cape Town:

"I agree with the forum, the mystery letter is possibly a date letter or pseudo date letter, as a few letters seem to predominate, I am not convinced the whole alphabet was in use in RSA.

The SAM mark postdates the rarer RMP mark (Royal Mint Pretoria), which was in use 1923 -32."

My helpful respondent also pointed out that I didn't count the centuries accurately: the coin celebrates the 300th, not the 400th, anniversary of the founding of Cape Town.

dognose
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Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby dognose » Tue Aug 26, 2014 6:50 am

Hi jondon,

Many thanks for taking the time to update the topic, it is appreciated.

Trev.

dnl
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Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby dnl » Sat Jan 02, 2016 6:22 am

Hi

If I understand the outstanding question is the date letter. As we know it, the South African Mint had date letters from 1948 to what we believe is 1988. The earlier marks were stylized as in the first 2 of the set of 3 images above.

The bowl appears to have a P date letter that matches to the 1963 year unless it is a B which is from 1949. 1952 was a stylized E so it cannot be from that year. It is difficult to be absolute with a partial mark.

The top of the 3 images has a date letter that appears to me as the G which is 1954. The middle image is the Z which is 1973. And finally the E is the standard serif font of the second cycle of lettering which was used in 1978.

We have the Lion in a U used on silver from 1948-1974. After that the Springbok without the Union mark was used.

Hope that helps some.

JanGroen
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Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby JanGroen » Thu Jul 14, 2016 12:22 pm

Good evening
The date letters and history of last centuries South African silver can be found here.

http://www.ascasonline.org/ARTICOLOGENNA202.html

Groete
Jannie

JanGroen
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Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby JanGroen » Thu Jul 14, 2016 12:31 pm

Here is some of my South African Hallmarks

Image and

Image

On the picture of the medal one can see the date letter for 1961 when we turned into a Republic. It was given out by South African Mint.

This flower pin shows a mark used after 1975
Image

Jannie

dognose
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Re: Help With South African Silver Please

Postby dognose » Thu Jul 14, 2016 2:33 pm

Hi Jannie,

Many thanks for posting these images.

Trev.


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