Great Britain is known for the metallic quality of its silverwork.
The primary reason is that it has the longest tradition (backed by law which established the sterling standard) of consistently marking silver in the world and the marks are fairly easily dated.
This appeals greatly to collectors of antique silver since they can attribute the item to an individual maker and they also know the city and year in which it was marked.
In the case of English silver souvenir spoons, we can also use the British hallmarking system and date the spoons. Most of the British souvenir spoons were made in Birmingham, but we do find a few from London and other cities. In addition, the British spoon makers made souvenir spoons for some of the colonies and places that British visitors were likely to visit. Furthermore, the British continued to make silver spoons well into the 20th century--long after the practice was stopped in most of the world.
Mr. Mikesell has pointed out to me that Saint Dunstan functions as the patron saint of goldsmiths and silversmiths, as he worked as a goldsmith and jeweler.
His Feast Day is May 19th, which is why the date year on hallmarks runs from May 19th to May 18th of the next year, not a calendar year.
However, some people also consider Saint Eligius to be the patron saint of Goldsmiths.
(Note, since 1972, the date letter changes on January 1 of each year.)
The British silversmiths were not as involved in the souvenir spoon movement until it had been underway in the USA and on the European continent for many years.
When they finally started making souvenir spoons, they did produce some interesting designs, but they did not exhibit the creativity of the American and European spoon makers.
A number of spoons were also made in Europe and then imported into the United Kingdom and they were stamped with British marks and the letter 'f'' (foreign).
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