Assay master and date mark

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piette
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Assay master and date mark

Postby piette » Sat Dec 21, 2019 5:18 pm

Hello all -

I have a question. The new assay charter of 1896 brought into place legislation for the new Kokoshnik mark, which would replace previous marks: 84 stamp, town mark, assayer and date mark.

As we all understand, this new Kokoshnik was not actually brought into place supposedly until June 1898, and the proper version of the first Kokoshnik first used in January 1899.

Does anyone have any examples of genuine Russian marks which have an assay masters mark above a date letter from the years 1897 or 1898? How do we know for certain the first Kokoshnik was not actually properly brought into use until 1899? Are there any authentic historical documents supporting this?

Kind Regards -
Piette

Ubaranda
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Re: Assay master and date mark

Postby Ubaranda » Mon Dec 23, 2019 7:57 am

Hello piette! See here:

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Vilno, 1897, maker Leyzer Sheynker (Лейзер Шейнкер), assayer Nikolay Stradomskiy (Николай Страдомский).

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Vilno, 1897, maker Movsha Gold (Мовша Гольд), assayer Nikolay Stradomskiy (Николай Страдомский).

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Vilno, 1897, maker Khaim Katz (Хаим Кац), assayer Nikolay Stradomskiy (Николай Страдомский).

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Riga, 1897, maker Carl Theodor Beyermann (Карл Теодор Байерманн), assayer Alexander Krollau (Александр Кроллау).

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Riga, 1897, maker Erik Bakstad (Эрик Бакстад), assayer Alexander Krollau (Александр Кроллау).

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Tiflis, 1897, maker M.V.Grinstein (М.В.Гринштейн), assayer Josif Shmidetskiy (Иосиф Шмидецкий).

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Odessa, 1897, maker V.Litvak (В.Литвак), assayer Timofey Kopanev (Тимофей Копанев).

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Odessa, 1897, maker G.Tsytrin (Г.Цитрин), assayer Timofey Kopanev (Тимофей Копанев).

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Odessa, 1898, maker G.Tsytrin (Г.Цитрин).

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Odessa, 1898, maker I.Kohriht (И.Кохрихт).

Regards!

Qrt.S
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Location: Helsinki Finland

Re: Assay master and date mark

Postby Qrt.S » Mon Dec 23, 2019 1:20 pm

Excellent Ubaranda! I was just to look for marks but you made it first. As to piettes' question, I will revert to it after Christmas. It is more complicated and needs a longer explanation. Unfortunately I don't have time right now. A short explanation is, anyway, that the old marks were used during the first part of 1998. During the latter part the new (illegal) left looking small figured fineness kokshnik was used to 31.12.1898.

Merry Christmas to all of you

Qrt.S
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Re: Assay master and date mark

Postby Qrt.S » Mon Dec 23, 2019 1:26 pm

@Ubaranda
Mind my asking, but after a closer look. What is the last marking supposed to be? It is completely illegal??? Who is ЛК???

Ubaranda
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Re: Assay master and date mark

Postby Ubaranda » Mon Dec 23, 2019 3:24 pm

Qrt.S wrote:@Ubaranda
Mind my asking, but after a closer look. What is the last marking supposed to be? It is completely illegal??? Who is ЛК???


Hi Qrt.S!
This is normal Odessa mark. In Odessa, starting in 1898, there were some marking features: additional annual mark, the name of the city, etc.
ЛК is unknown maker to me. It is possible that he was manufacturer and Kohricht was seller. Or maybe the other way around ...
Regards.

Qrt.S
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Re: Assay master and date mark

Postby Qrt.S » Mon Dec 23, 2019 3:40 pm

HI Ubaranda,
No, I don''t buy that. It is far from an official or normal legal marking for the period. Maker or seller makes no difference, but where is is the assaying mark with the assayer's initials? You know very well that is was forbidden to sell unassayed silver. Something is not in place in this mark, sorry.

Qrt.S
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Re: Assay master and date mark

Postby Qrt.S » Tue Dec 24, 2019 3:42 am

On second thought I withdraw my previous statements. It is OK but looks a bit strange only, sorry.

Qrt.S
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Location: Helsinki Finland

Re: Assay master and date mark

Postby Qrt.S » Fri Dec 27, 2019 8:14 am

@piette
It is a good question and it has been presented before, ”Repetitia est mater studiorum”. Unfortunately a 100% correct answer is difficult to give, but to make a long story short and according to known documents this is what happened:

In February 19th 1896 an Assay Charter was released concerning gold and Silverware Hallmarking as from 1897. It was not an easy task because the new rules were not easily accepted. Anyway, the Mint office in St Petersburg started to manufacture the new hallmark, known as the left looking kokoshnik. It faced difficulties from the very first beginning and the office was unable to deliver the new hallmarks to the Assay Offices throughout Russia by the beginning of 1898. Therefore the use of the old hallmarks continued as from the beginning of 1898. You can see it from the punches Ubaranda showed in his input.

It is a bit unclear the exact date when St Petersburg and Moscow got their new punches. It is assumed that the date would have been July 1st 1898, but…? Anyway, it happened during the latter part of 1898. Only three punches are known; Artsibachev (AA), Lebedkin (ИЛ) and Lyapunov (ЯЛ). If somebody knows more, I would be happy to see it/them, thank you.

Piette asked for documentation. There is a complaint letter sent from the Ministry of Finance’s department’s Assay office to the Mint Office on 29th December 1898, claiming briefly the following:

The new hallmark in intaglio is imperfect and not made according to the legislation of 1896. In addition, It is in bad quality, it is difficult to use and it will easily break….. ,moreover, easy to forge. We kindly ask you to take immediate actions to renew it according to the requirements and distribute it at the earliest convenience...…..

The non-standard imperfect hallmarks were still used to the end of 1898. During December 1898 new hallmarks were distributed and as from January 1st 1899 it became mandatory to use the new legal hallmark. It exists in two variations. If somebody knows which comes first, I’d like to know it. The left looking kokshnik was a disaster from the very first beginning. Therefore the Ministry of Finance ordered to exchange the current hallmark used to a new one, the right looking kokshnik in August 10th 1905. That's, anyway another story...

Besides, as I mentioned in the beginning, it is a long and complicated story. In case somebody knows more, please complement with what is missing or correct what might be incorrect, thank you.


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