The are many reasons for using it over sterling silver. Most of the imports currently being mis-labeled as hill tribe silver are done in Ag .980, The smiths I've met over there prefer it because it is softer and easier to stamp and forge than sterling.
It melts at a higher temp and so folks over there do not like it for casting however.
In the states it is most often referred to as --fine silver--.
At 98 or 99 percent it is considered about as pure as one can get.
H is the first letter of the Finnish word for silver, Hopea, and '916H' is a Finnish designation for .935 silver, see Warman's Jewelry 2nd Edition, 'Marks on Metals' for a concise listing of many silver fineness marks.'Tardy's International Hallmarks on Silver' is a great resource, and also includes the above info, and much much more, including information about the hallmarks used in Malta from about 1530 onwards.
Both of the above volumes can be found available for sale online or at quality booksellers. Hi Sande-- I'm a silversmith here in the US and often work in Ag .980 I know many people that do as well.
(I believe) it is 1970 Finnish, from the town of Turku, but wasn't able to come up with an artist.
submitted by Myrna in Tulsa I haven't seen this particular design before, so can't be sure, but the 'bird or animal with it's mouth open' could be the maker's mark for Auran Kultaseppa which is an eagle head with it's beak slightly ajar.
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of Providence RI, which is the listing ABOVE the mark on page 57 of Rainwater.
Rainwater can be confusing, but just remember that the marks always follow the names and info in that book. You can find this info on page 38 of Maryanne Dolan's Collecting Rhinestones & Colored Jewelry, 3rd edition, where the info is UNDER the mark.
It is heavy in weight for its slim contour and on one end where there is the space to put it on the wrist is: sterling,then a capital A, then a half circle with spokes..like a half sun.