Online Encyclopedia of Silver Marks, Hallmarks & Makers' Marks
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Illustrated Silver Glossary (C - E)

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Caudle Cup - A small two handled drinking cup used in the 17th and early 18th centuries, often with a lid. Used to serve caudle, a warm drink of gruel mixed with ale or wine, to which spices or honey is added. Also called a posset pot. In Britain, later and slightly larger versions of the form are called porringers.
(submitted by - dmay)
Censer - Openwork container, suspended on chains, used for burning incense in religious ceremonies. Also called a thurible.
(submitted by - Trev)
Chalice - A cup used for wine at the sacrement of Holy Communion.
(submitted by - Trev)
Chamber Candlestick - A portable candlestick, incorporating a drip tray and ring handle and sometimes a snuffer.
(submitted by - Trev)
Chasing - The technique for giving definition and a texture to a design with the use of small punches. Unlike engraving, no metal is removed in the process. Chasing is often used in conjunction with repousse.
Chatelaine - An ornamental clasp, worn at the belt, from which keys or small utilitarian items were hung on short chains. From Old French meaning keeper (key holder) of a castle.
(submitted by - Patrick)
Chenier - The tubular silver used in the making of hinges.
(submitted by - Trev)
Chinoiserie - Pseudo oriental form or decoration on silver, popular mid to late 17th. century followed by a revival in the second quarter of the 18th. century.
(submitted by - Trev)
Chocolate Pot - Similar to a coffee pot but usually with the handle set at right angles to the spout and sometimes fitted with a stirring wand to stop the chocolate separating.
(submitted by - Trev)
Ciborium - Sacramental cup and cover used as a container for Holy Communion wafers.
(submitted by - Trev)
Cigar Lamp - A table item that accompanied the brandy decanter, a small oil lamp that was used to light cigars. Usually it had a single wick opening and a snuffer on a chain. Popular during the 19th century and early 20th century.
(submitted by - Patrick)
Cinquefoil - Lobed design based on a five leaf petal, as is the cartouche form of this Austria-Hungary assay mark.
Claret Jug - A handled pitcher or jug used for serving claret. Claret is the British term for red wine from the Bordeaux region of France. Sometimes all silver, often glass bodied with silver mounts.
"Claret Jug" is also the name of the silver trophy given to the winner of the U.S. Open Championship in golf.
(submitted by - dmay)
Close Plate - A silverplating technique used during the 18th century for items such as spurs, knife blades and buckles. Thin silver foil was soldered onto steel that had been dipped in tin. More cost-effective methods made this process obsolete in the mid-19th century.
(submitted by - Patrick)
Coin Silver - A term unique to American silver, derived from the 19th century practice of stamping the words; COIN, PURE COIN, DOLLAR, STANDARD, PREMIUM, etc. on silver items to assure consumers that it was of a fineness equivalent to U.S. coins, roughly 892/1000 from 1792-1837, 900/1000 after 1837. The term is commonly used for all American silver made prior to ca. 1870, when sterling became the predominant standard used in the country. Coin silver can vary in actual fineness from lower than .750 to higher than .950. Coinage, often Spanish dollars (legal tender in the U.S. until 1857, they varied in fineness from roughly 903/1000 to 930/1000, depending on when minted), was often melted down for making flatware and holloware. However, coins were not the only source of silver, damaged and outdated silver (sometimes from other countries and of varying fineness), bullion, etc. were also commonly used. It wasn't until the National Stamping act of 1906 that U.S. law required that pieces marked "COIN" must be of at least 900/1000 fineness. (submitted by - dragonflywink)
Court of Assistants - British term, the board containing the senior members of the Goldsmiths' Company.
(submitted by - Trev)
Crosshatching - Engraving term for crossing lines either straight or diagonal.
(submitted by - Trev)
Cruet Stand - A metal framework used to hold small bottles or containers of condiments such as; salt, pepper, oil, or vinegar, for use at a dining table.
(submitted by - Myriam)
Cusp - The point at which two curves meet, as in the outline on some British Duty Marks 1797 - c.1830
(submitted by - Trev)
Cut-Card Work - A decorative applique technique in which sheets of silver are pierced with patterns and solder applied as ornamentation.
Cyathus - An ancient form of drinking cup, single handled with a central foot.
(submitted by - Trev)
Cylix - An ancient form of wine bowl with wide flat handles and a central foot.
(submitted by - Trev)
Damascene - The process of applying silver or gold onto a base metal, often seen on firearms and sword hilts. This art takes its name from the city of Damascus where the finest work was once performed.
(submitted by - Trev)
Date Letter - The alphabetic system used by an Assay Office to indicate the year of assay.
Demitasse Spoon - Small spoon to fit a demitasse (half size or espresso) cup.
(submitted by - Trev)
Diaperwork - Pattern made up of squares or lozenges.
(submitted by - Trev)
Die Cutting - Industrial technique in which a die pattern is created in steel. This steel die, or master, is used to stamp out identical articles of a softer metal. Virtually all pattern flatware is created in this fashion.
Diet - British term, the quantity of silver removed from an item for the purpose of assay, this is retained by the Goldsmiths' Company for use in the "Trial of the Diet".
(submitted by - Trev)
Dish Cross - An X shaped device for protecting tables from hot dishes. The arms of the cross can adjusted to various sizes and the center is often fitted with a spirit burner. Earliest examples date from c.1740.
(submitted by - Trev)
Dish Ring - A forerunner to the dish-cross, circular with concave openwork sides to release the heat. Their popularity faded with the advent of the dish-cross, except in Ireland where they became ever more popular for the next 150 years. Also known as a Potato Ring.
(submitted by - Trev)
Dognose - A type of flatware pattern where the plain handle broadens and terminates in three lobes with the center protuberance turned up, originally called Wavy End, it was popular c.1695-1720 and is usually accompanied with a Rat-Tail bowl. see; Trefid
(submitted by - Trev)
Draw Plate - Metalworking tool, a flat plate of steel with rows of various sized holes for drawing silver and gold wires.
(submitted by - Trev)
Dredger - Term that can be applied to any container with a pierced top i.e. casters, flour dredgers, ponce pots or muffineers.
(submitted by - Trev)
Drop - Of spoons; an extension used on the underside to strengthen the join between stem and bowl. Comes in such forms as: single, double and strap. This thickened area also prevents wear through to the bowl bottom. Also called a 'heel'.
(submitted by - Miles)
Duty Mark - A mark used in Britain, c.1785-1890, to indicate that a tax on the item had been paid to the crown. The mark took the form of a profile portrait of the current reigning monarch's head.
Ecuelle - French two -handled soup bowl with a cover.
(submitted by - Trev)
Edwardian - Made during the reigns of any of the King Edwards (specifically Edward VII - 1901-1910).
(submitted by - Miles)
Electroplating - The use of electricity to deposit a coating of precious metal, suspended in a solution, on the base metal of an object. The first patent for the process was granted to the Elkington Brothers of Birmingham, England in 1840. The brothers, George & Henry, founded the silver electroplating industry that has spread to all parts of the world. Common markings on electroplated silverware include:
E.P.C. - Electroplated Copper
E.P.B.M. - Electroplated Britannia Metal
E.P.N.S. - Electroplated Nickel Silver.
E.P.W.M. - Electroplated White Metal
Silver Soldered
Emboss - To create a three-dimensional design by pressure with the use of dies, stamps or punches from the reverse. see; Repousse
Enamel - The colorful result of fusing powdered glass to a substrate by firing the powdered glass until it melts and flows and hardens to a smooth, durable vitreous coating.

Enameling Techniques:
Basse Taille - Enameling process similar to Champleve, the technique differs by cutting the base metal to different depths causing the transparent enamel to reflect varying shades.
Champleve - Enameling process where depressions are sunk into the base metal prior to the enamel being applied. This of course requires a thick metal base and is the opposite of Cloisonne.
Cloisonne - Enameling process where flattened metal wires are applied on their side to the base metal surface to make specific designs and creating small compartments in which various coloured enamels are then applied, then fired and finally ground to a smooth finish.
Grisaille - Painted enamel technique, using white enamel over a dark enamel ground, creating a strong contrasting effect, the surface often hatched to reveal the dark enamel underneath.
Guilloche - Enameling process often used on an engine-turned base, the transparent enamel having great effect on reflected light on the engraved surface.
Plique-a-Jour - Enameling process using a perforated metal base, so that the translucent enamel is exposed on both sides, producing a stained glass window effect. Very popular during the Art-Nouveau period.
Taille d'Epargne - Enameling process where small shallow cuts are made into the base metal leaving the majority of the surface undisturbed, often used when applying linear decoration or initials to items.
(submitted by - Trev)

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Related Pages at
American Silver Marks
British Hallmarks
Austrian Hallmarks
Dutch Hallmarks
Finnish Hallmarks & Makers
French Hallmarks & Makers
German Hallmarks
Italian Marks from 1872
Swedish Hallmarks
Danish Makers
Norwegian Makers
David-Andersen Marks
Georg Jensen Marks
Yogya Silver
Mexican Marks & Makers
Chinese Export Marks
Silverplate Trademarks

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