Hallmarks are applied with a hammer and punch, a process that leaves sharp edges and spurs of metal.Therefore, hallmarking is generally done before the piece goes for its final polishing.There may be some variations in backgrounds during the late 19th century, especially on watch cases.Depending upon the font used for the series of date letters, the letter i, j or l is usually omitted to avoid any possible confusion between them.It involves testing and the fineness of the metal and then stamping it with control marks that show the results.Hallmarking is carried out by an organisation independent of the manufacturer of the item.
This page isn't an end in itself, it is intended to help make a start on identifying the hallmarks in your watch case and then lead you to another page with more detail.When information is found it will appear with credit given to the person who provided it. Marks were introduced by each country at different times, and the rules and regulations involved can be very complex. these standards all appear around the turn of the century at various time according to the descretion of the manufacturer.Some countries, like France, use symbols rather than numbers, and so 925 would never have been used in those countries. A link to her site can be found on the Educational and Informational Sites page under Reference on my web site (last listing on the page). it would not come into use until after the sterling standard was introduced by england in the later part of the 19th century. goverment standards have been set for centuries and vary as to marks and country.As a result the date letter cycle is usually 25 years as opposed to 26.For example, due to the very simplistic font currently in use, it was decided that the letter ‘i’ should be omitted in 2008, with ‘j’ used instead and ‘l’ used in 2010.