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A quick look at the English hallmarks revealed the ring is close to 160 years old.

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England has a long tradition of stamping every item made from precious metal with a series of hallmarks.

The individual marks make it possible to identify the maker, the type/quality of metal, the city of assay and the year it was produced. If you enjoy history, high quality and have a small size 5 finger this would made a great wedding ring.

At just short of 160 years old the 2.8mm wide ring is in remarkable condition. Our goldsmiths can custom fit this ring to almost any size. When it comes to coloured gems, blue sapphires are by far the most popular choice.

This type of ring makes a great alternate wedding ring if you go on holiday and don’t want to wear your expensive diamond in an unfamiliar area. Offering excellent durability and a rich deep gold colour that only extra high karat gold can offer. It’s no surprise really considering the colour blue is the favorite hue of around 25% of the population, while red and green only account for about 20% together.

If jewelry has hallmarks and they appear authentic, identifying its value is a whole lot easier. How does a budding collector begin to unravel this puzzle?

A trusted dealer can help but if you want to learn to identify jewelry on your own, you’ll need a good guide. On our website people can send in questions about hallmarks and many times we receive maker’s marks instead of hallmarks.

This ring came to us in a collection of old and mostly worn out jewellery.

Pretty much everything was beyond rehabilitation and went in for salvage and recycling. It was still remarkably shiny and really stood out among the collection of the other miscellaneous jewellery items.

I informed a seller recently that something advertised as “made in the 1700s” was actually made in the 1930s in Czechoslovakia.

In many cases, mistakes like that are innocent and they thank me and take it down.

There are a few books on the market, but if you want the ultimate, illustrated reference book, be prepared to shell out a couple hundred bucks for World Hallmarks, Volume I: Europe, 19th to 21st Centuries, due out in its second printing this month. People think any maker’s mark is a hallmark and that becomes a problem.