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Thread: Dating razors: British Hallmarks & sovereigns

  1. #1
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    Default Dating razors: British Hallmarks & sovereigns

    Investigating around my razors, I gathered some infos regarding british hallmarks, traditionally used by silversmiths. I realised that some hallmarks were also used by straight razors manufacturers:

    Crown [City mark] = Sheffield (from 1733 to present)
    Anchor [city mark] = Birmingham (from 1733 to present)

    One more find (not strictly connected with silver hallmarks):

    WR [sovereign's Duty Mark] = William IV (1820-1837)
    VR [sovereign's Duty Mark] = Victoria (1837-1901)

    Some examples (Wade&Butcher's in my gallery):

    Pic.A (razor #11): [crown] + WR; very precise dating! The ebay seller of this razor published a pic in SRP some days before the auction asking info about the dating. Members agreed that it should be quite old (..the rust on the blade was supporting this opinion..).

    Pic.B (razors #55-57): [crown] + V R;

    Pic.C (razor #25): [anchor]; the anchor is sometimes used by Wade&Butcher but I don't know if this implies a relationship with the city of Birmingham; I couldn't find infos at this regard. "Sheffield" is absent in the mark on the tang, but this is quite common between W&B razors (very frequent among W&B "barber's use" blades). It happens that the anchor is also part of the emblem of Solingen.. eheh!

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    Last edited by clavichord; 05-05-2009 at 12:49 AM.
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    When I saw the title Dating Razors I thought "That dude really likes his razors. I just shave with mine"

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    Me too! I really enjoy honing and shaving with mine! ..OK, not with the rusted one!

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    Different sovereign's duty marks among your blades? Before William IV, only Georges (from 1714 to 1830: George I, II, III, IV).
    Last edited by clavichord; 05-06-2009 at 01:27 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CraigJ View Post
    When I saw the title Dating Razors I thought "That dude really likes his razors. I just shave with mine"
    Same here! Got me curious!

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    ..you, guys..

    eheheh!

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    Success! I found the missing element: the sovereign's mark GR, indicating George IV, 1820-1830. Even better: it comes from a Wade&Butcher razor (in not very good conditions..). Also, note that there is an error in the first post of this thread: William IV was king between 1830 and 1837.

    Name:  GR.jpg
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    Now it could be interesting to give a look to the change of tastes between 1820's and 1850's. Look at the tails of three different W&B's: GR (1820, 1830), WR (1830-1837), VR (1837-1901).

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    Red face

    William IV ruled from 1830-1837. A W<crown>R can narrow the age of a razor down to a seven year period - this is the best anyone can do. I have only seen one razor of the G<crown>R variety that was obviously old enough to be George the third. Anything other than a V<crown>R is very rare.

    John


    Quote Originally Posted by clavichord View Post
    Investigating around my razors, I gathered some infos regarding british hallmarks, traditionally used by silversmiths. I realised that some hallmarks were also used by straight razors manufacturers:

    Crown [City mark] = Sheffield (from 1733 to present)
    Anchor [city mark] = Birmingham (from 1733 to present)

    One more find (not strictly connected with silver hallmarks):

    WR [sovereign's Duty Mark] = William IV (1820-1837)
    VR [sovereign's Duty Mark] = Victoria (1837-1901)

    Some examples (Wade&Butcher's in my gallery):

    Pic.A (razor #11): [crown] + WR; very precise dating! The ebay seller of this razor published a pic in SRP some days before the auction asking info about the dating. Members agreed that it should be quite old (..the rust on the blade was supporting this opinion..).

    Pic.B (razors #55-57): [crown] + V R;

    Pic.C (razor #25): [anchor]; the anchor is sometimes used by Wade&Butcher but I don't know if this implies a relationship with the city of Birmingham; I couldn't find infos at this regard. "Sheffield" is absent in the mark on the tang, but this is quite common between W&B razors (very frequent among W&B "barber's use" blades). It happens that the anchor is also part of the emblem of Solingen.. eheh!

    EDIT: Join "Those damned collectors" social group!

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    Quote Originally Posted by John Crowley View Post
    William IV ruled from 1830-1837. A W<crown>R can narrow the age of a razor down to a seven year period - this is the best anyone can do. John
    Well, isn't that the same I wrote (grammar mistakes apart )?

    The GR is #64 of my gallery, WR is #11, VR is #55. Sorry, but pics were taken before cleaning the blades.

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    The English are meticulous when it comes to documenting things. I have some old English Pocketwatches from the 1700s with Sterling cases and they have a variety of hallmarks on them. They usually identify the assay content, the makers mark, the company mark, the city where manufactured and often times the guild.
    No matter how many men you kill you can't kill your successor-Emperor Nero

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