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Antique and Vintage Jewellery Lecture:

Beyond the Glitter: Unravelling Fakes and Forgeries

jewelry forgeries fakes counterfeits

In the world of vintage and antique jewellery, not every item labeled as a 'fake' is truly devoid of value. This intricate realm includes high-quality pieces with misattributed marks, such as genuine Russian silver objects bearing false Fabergé hallmarks. Additionally, style counterfeiting has its own history, like the late 19th-century tobacco boxes made in antique styles and exported as such to Britain, which have now themselves become collectables.

Metal faking, involving silver or gold plating, or even mere colouring, often accompanied by counterfeit hallmarks, is quite common. Pieces that overly assert their authenticity often warrant suspicion.

As long as there is a demand for genuine precious stones with high price tags, the creation of imitation gems, including synthetic gemstones, persists; the practice of using counterfeit stones dates back as far as the use of authentic ones. Materials such as Strass, glass, and synthetic or semi-precious stones are employed to mimic the appearance of the genuine articles.

Additionally, the practice of 'duty dodging' by silversmiths should be be highlighted. This involves hallmarking a small silver plate, later used as the base for a heavier object, to avoid higher hallmarking fees.

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