Silver is considered to be a precious metal and is the most plentiful of all metals falling into this category. It has long been used to fashion serving pieces , decorative items, jewelry , and a host of other goods. It is indicated as. When metals are combined they are referenced as alloys. Thus most silver, including sterling, falls into the alloy category. There are many different terms used to describe various alloys sold as silver. Also, keep in mind that for an item to be deemed sterling, This is why many sterling silver items are marked.
The marks on the bottom of a piece of silver can be an indication of the age, maker, and origin of the piece. This is a list of American silver marks and solid American silver. Other lists include silver-plated wares and pewter. It will not help you to identify other silver. Four or five small pictorial marks usually indicate England as the country of origin. Queen Victoria faces left. Queen Elizabeth faces left.
To identify your sterling silver piece or pattern please answer the following questions:. If the answer is YES proceed to question 2. If your answer is NO you may still want to review the manufacturers trademarks to see if there is a match.