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Last edited 24 May 2022
The term 'goldsmith' traditionally describes a worker in both gold and silver (also silversmith), but today may also refer to those who work with platinum and palladium. It is a registered qualification in the UK.
The more formal history of goldsmithing as a trade in the UK began in 1300 when King Edward I passed a statute requiring gold and silver to be of a defined standard and requiring ‘les Gardeins du Mester’ (Guardians of the Craft) to test it and mark it with the leopard’s head. Supposedly taken from the royal arms, later known as the King’s mark it was the first legal recognition of the goldsmiths' company, and was the beginning of what is know today as hallmarking in Britain.
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