Dating birmingham silver
Since 1821, the uncrowned leopard’s head has remained as the distinguishing mark of London.
The laws governing silver hallmarking are very strict and if an item does not comply with a standard the item will not be hallmarked and will probably be destroyed.
Download a feature article on the leopard from the Goldsmiths' Company Review 2014-2015.
A non-compulsory element, the date letter changes annually on January 1st.
In that year, a decree by Edward I laid down that silver or gold could not be made or sold unless it was marked by the leopard’s head or The King’s Mark, as it was then known.
This mark became crowned in 1478 and remained crowned until 1821.