1.It was NOT mandatory to mark silver fineness in Loth numbers. Many, many examples: town mark + maker`s mark.
2. Reichsgesetzblatt (Imperial Law Gazette),dated January 10 1886 in Berlin, published legislation (Bestimmung) of marks on gold and silver within the German empire with the following sentence: Stempelzeichen muss enthalten (marks MUST include).
But crescent and crown mark is often missing in spite of legislation (just look at Hanau silver).
Therefore, the answer is yes, it was obligatory but the regulation was not strictly obeyed. Besides, in the legislation mentioned above there is no additional paragraph of legal consequences (penalties) of disobedience.
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