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Covered with a layer of gold, of any specified fineness, by its being bonded to a base metal by electroplating. Such articles must, in the United States, have a layer of gold equal to at least 1/20th of the total weight of the metal in the piece, and the piece must be marked 'gold filled', with the phrase preceded by the appropriate carat fineness, e.g. '10-carat gold filled'.
From: An Illustrated Dictionary of Jewelry, autor: Harold Newman, publishers: Thames and Hudson