How to identify a gold hallmark

When planning to buy gold jewellery as gift for our loved ones, one of our best tool to evaluate
the quality, purity, age and the true value of an article on hand, is always our own clear
comprehension of gold hallmarks. So to become a wiser buyer, learn the basic information on
gold hallmarks and how to identify them.

What is a gold hallmark?

A gold hallmark is a series of small symbols stamped in discreet areas of gold jewellery. These
symbols tell us that the gold jewellery had been subjected to independent tests by an accredited
assay office, and that it passes, and follows the official standard of purity and fineness. Thus,
hallmark is a symbol or sign of authenticity or excellence of your gold jewelry.

Types of Gold Hallmarks

So as soon as your marketing lady, hands over a gold jewellery that you find most glittering for
your eyes, arm yourself with a magnifying lens and look for these gold hallmarks;

First, the Sponsor’s Mark. The sponsor’s mark or manufacturer’s mark shows the individual
or company accountable for sending an article in an assay office. The sponsor may also be the
manufacturer, retailer and importer.
Second, the Standard Mark. After the sponsor’s mark you will see a rectangular shape with
corner’s cut off. This would tell you right away that the item is gold. The 3-digit number inside
the rectangular shape indicates the fineness or parts per thousand of gold. British Hallmark
for gold varies from 916, 750, 585, and 375. Wherein, 916 mean that the item has 91.6% gold
content or 22 karat. Some standard mark is usually accompanied by a crown symbol or the Gold
Standard Mark.

Third, the Assay Mark. An assay office is an independent third party organization accredited
and in-charge of testing the purity of precious metals like gold jewellery. An assay office
stamps a tested piece with a symbol unique to the place where they operate and this is called the

Assay Mark. In England, assay office in Birmingham marks an anchor; Sheffield’s office stamps
a rose, and a leopard in London.

And lastly, the Date Mark. The date mark is a letter which indicates the exact year a gold
jewellery was made. The varying shape and case (uppercase or lowercase) of the letter affects the
specific year, wherein many materials of relevant tables are available are easily available on the

As they say, the quality of our decision often relies on the quality of information we have on
hand. When buying a precious gold jewellery, it would be a better decision of course, to take
advantage of the valuable information you can extract in a simple gold hallmark and know how
to identify them. By then, you’ll be assured that the one that glitters is really gold.