Hallmarks on watches

British Horological Institute Limited

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The Hallmarking of silver and gold items has been in operation in the United Kingdom since 1327. Since that date it has been a punishable offence to offer for sale any article purporting to be made of a precious metal unless it bears the stamp (Hallmark) of one of the recognised Assay Offices. Until as recently as 1773, the penalty for counterfeiting the Hallmark was death, It was then changed to 14 years transportation to a penal colony. Now the maximum penalty is 10 years imprisonment. The most obvious use of the Hallmarking system to Horologists is the ease with which it enables them to date English watches with ease and certainty.

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