A very toothy boar’s head, one-piece silvered
CJ Weldon 150 Cheapside London
A single but beautifully ornate raised capital letter M on an entirely plain background. (It’s definitely an M, I think – it looks quite uncomfortable the other way up!)
Hammond Turner & Dickinson
A terribly badly stained but delightful bat.
Edward Armfield Birmingham (see backmarks gallery)
Deeply mysterious, wreathed in the legends of Wales and dragons – or is it something much more prosaic? I’d be delighted to hear from anyone who recognises this crest.
Even the backmark is unusual – HT&S Birmingham XX quality 1132
The motto appears to read Usque fidelis which seems to mean Always faithful. It may be the crest of the Napier family. One-piece silvered front – the silvering may have worn off the tree or it may have been made like that.
Backmark Kirkwood & Son Edinburgh. There is an odd patch beneath the shank which may be where something stamped into the metal had to be deleted.
Button 208 coniferous
A two-piece silvered front – again the silvering may have worn off the tree or it may always have stood out from the background. The crest may relate to the Usborne family – Pax in bello means peace in war, which strikes me as odd but is probably deeply meaningful to the Usbornes!
C&J Weldon 130 Cheapside London
Button 208 deciduous
This collection by mixed makers arrived in a little wooden box, which doesn’t appear to be related to its contents. All the buttons are one-piece. Makers are 2 x Firmin & Sons London (upright lion holding a sword, an elaborate construction above the words devour sans hommes – maybe!), C&J Weldon London (?leopard’s head with star), no make Treble Gilt Quality (the single world ‘sleep’), unattributed (lion upright, paw on fleur de lys, crown above) and (a backward) RG (French Make with a crown on an eye-shaped textured central panel)
This trio came to me from a metal detectorist who put his find on eBay. The seller suggested that the double-snake button is the crest of the Wicksteed family and the single snake is the Dodd family. The third item was not mentioned in the sale: the word platca is Slovak for payment and the letters below look like HV. I have no idea of its significance – if you can enlighten me, please get in touch.
The button backmarks are almost impossible to read and the mystery disc has a plain reverse.