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Robert S.
Robert S., Antiques and Collectibles Researcher
Category: Antiques
Satisfied Customers: 5594
Experience:  Expert in decorative arts especially ceramics, silver, paintings, and furniture.
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I have a miniature arab falconer with the marks of J over I

Customer Question

I have a miniature arab falconer with the marks of J over I CO in a trefoil. It has thelion mark for silver and The date mark is capital K for 1984
JA: I always love having an appraiser look at my stuff. Sometimes its turned out to be surprisingly valuable. Tell us what else you do know and the antiques appraiser will be able to better assist you.
Customer: The town mark is the lion head for London. The detail is in gold. I want to know the name of the silversmith
JA: Is there anything else important you think the antiques appraiser should know?
Customer: The Arab has his left arm outstretche and is waering a falconer glove and is holding a falcon. He is wearing long robes in silver and 2 cross body bags in gold. He is attached to a steppe layered black glass base.
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Antiques
Expert:  Doris replied 8 months ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is Doris.
I have been an antiques and art collector as well as a dealer and appraiser for over 56 years.
I will be pleased to help you. Please know I do not send pop-ups.

Photos are almost always required to give an accurate assessment.

Can you send me a photo of the marks?

I also need a photo of the figurine.

How tall is it?

You may need to use the macro function (flower icon) of your camera to get a good clear photo of the marks.

If you cannot get a good photo, then sketch the marks and take a photo of the sketch.

To send photos you may use the "add files" in the blue box link on your reply page or the "paper clip" found in the toolbar you see on your reply page.
Please do not send in ZIP format. The jpg or jpeg format works best.

An explanation of this method can be found here:

Kind regards,

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hi Doris,
I also was in the antique business for almost 30 years. However, I need help with this one, being it is not an antique. Most of my books and even online stop before this was made. The figure with base to top of falcon wing is 6". The Arab figure is 4"tall; 1 1/4" at the base; width from right ar to edge wing of falcon is about 3". The base is 5 1/2" by 4 1/2" by approx. 1" tall. I am sending 3 photos: front, back, and marks.
Expert:  Doris replied 8 months ago.

Thank you for the information and photos. These really help.

Please allow me time to research the data required by your question, calculate current values and write my answer.

I want you to have a well-researched answer.

I thank you in advance for your patience.

Kind regards,


Expert:  Doris replied 8 months ago.

I researched this silversmith (or possibly jeweller) for quite some time. I have over 100 books on English silver but none contain a clue to the maker here.

Unfortunately, I will need to opt-out of your question. This will open it up to all the other antiques and appraisal specialists. In the meantime, I will continue looking for the answer. You have my curiosity up.

Kind regards,


Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Thank you Doris.
Perhaps someone else will have an answer. It is an exquisite piece. The detail is superb, with the gold and possibly platin highlights. I don't know if the photos do it justice. I find it quite interesting that the man has a large moustache, and a quite prominent nose.
Hoping for an answer,
Expert:  Nora replied 8 months ago.


At your convenience, please send more clear, in-focus close-ups of the just the maker mark on the hallmarks on this.

Thank you,


Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hi Nora,
I have taken about 30 pictures of this mark, I will attach the best one. To describe: the mark is a trefoil, with a J in the top circle, an I in the left circle and CO in the center and right circle. Hope you find it!!
Expert:  Nora replied 8 months ago.


I am not able to see the mark clearly in the images. In the meantime, I will opt-out and open your question again to all the experts.

I do hope you find the information that you seek.



Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Thank you for your try.
I thought my description might help. The marks are in the folds of the robe, and therefor not easy to photograph. I will try again today with my Nikon.
Regards, Audrey
Expert:  Nora replied 8 months ago.

I do hope you find the information that you seek. ~Nora

Expert:  Robert S. replied 8 months ago.

Hi Audrey,

My name is ***** ***** I would be happy to help with your mystery sculpture.

I sympathize with you not being able to find this mark, it's a tough one. You're right, it's too recent to be in any books on antique or even vintage silver, also there is such a small body of work by this maker that it may well never become anything other than a line item in any future reference.

This J.I.Co mark in a trefoil punch was registered at the Birmingham, UK, assay office in the early 1980s.

Interestingly, your particular piece was assayed in London (because it has the leopard's head punch for the London Assay Office). This can happen for a number of reasons, usually if the maker is 'entered' (registered) with both offices, or sometimes because it may be geographically easier for the maker to get his/her items to one office rather than another.

It also has all the other proper marks, the lion passant, the English royal guarantee of .925 silver fineness and the date letter (as you correctly looked up) for 1984.

To obtain all the information on this mark, simply email the Birmingham Assay Office at:


and ask to contact a wonderfully helpful lady named Phyllis Benedikz who is the librarian/curator. Or contact her direct at:

She usually asks for the following information (which you already have):

  • Details of the maker's mark- the letters; type of lettering (e.g. roman, sans serif); position of any dots; shape of the punch outline. Attach this photo too and one of the item itself.
  • The date: 1984.
  • Other marks present, eg the leopard's head and the lion passant.

If she says it's "not a Birmingham mark" show her this photo of a silver Arab dhow by the same maker, J.I.Co. It was hallmarked "JI Co, Birmingham, 1987", mounted on a wood plinth, 17cm long, that sold at auction last year in the UK for £75.00 (about $100 at the time).

I do hope this helps!

Please let me know if you'd like to explain or expand on any of the above, I would be glad to.

Best wishes,

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hello Robert,
Thank you for your information. Yes, I already know London assay mark; sterling mark and date 1984. However, I still would like to know the makers name.
Expert:  Robert S. replied 8 months ago.

Sure, I understand. The only archive that would have a record of this maker's name is ***** ***** Assay office and the contact details I gave you (above). I've found them extremely helpful in the past.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I will attempt to get this info from the Assay Office.