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Gentleman's Military Interest Club


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About Graf

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  • Interests
    Belgium NationalOrders, Imperial German Iron Cross, French Legion of Honour Order, Italy Order of the Crown.
    Bulgariam Royal Orders and Rare Communist Orders
    Epaulettes -WW1 and earlier era

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  1. Hi New Word, For me it does matter. If the Dealer did it it is too bad If a lonely collector did it it point to creating purely fantasy item Any way No point arguing here Our role is to detect any fakes or unusual items and list it for discussions and to warn the members Best
  2. Hi New World, I agrree with your points Those stones are just glued to the swords handles..and they look very new and modern !00% recently "upgraded" item It was not a good job at all This is either fantasy upgrade or as you suggest to increase the value The question is who did it a collector or a Dealer ? Unfortunately, there are still many collectors out there who are not members of any forum and they do not know the traps and tricks on the market They simply trust the "reputable' dealers Note how the item is described. Buyer Be Ware rules apply.
  3. I want to share with you this interesting Star of the Order of Holly Spirit It was made once off for a movie set using the Original design of the star of king Louis XIV The size is 110 mm wide and long It has 100 Zirconia Diamond Stones it is silvered Weight 115 grams
  4. Hi Ilieff, Even now they a pretty nice let alone when a 15 years boy did.them Well done It is unfair to call them Wall of Shame More likely name is to be "My First Steps" Wall of Shames are all deliberate fakes Cheers Graf
  5. Graf

    belgian Order of Leopold l

    Hi Pieter, If you have the boar head (swinehead) mark that is a French mark for a Silver The features of the Star were pointing towards French Maker can you see with the magnifying glass what are the Letters inside the other mark In the French Section There is very nice thread with the French Makers marks Guy Deploige from Royal Military Museum in Brussels is very knowledgeable on this topic Best
  6. I forgot to include this one
  7. Graf

    belgian Order of Leopold l

    Hi Pieter, Very nice GC Set The Cross is typical Heremans. The Star, as you suggested, could be French. Do you see any marks for silver or any maker marks? They could be on the pin or pin system It is unique not only because is with a text on the back, but also because has those red stones, which is very unusual for the Belgium Stars unless it was made for a Noble and/or rich person NOTE: Please do not try to open the pictures/links from the Post 248 It looks they are infected or someone hacked the links
  8. I finally managed to get all my Bulgarian Miniatures together for a Group photo. Here they are
  9. Graf

    belgian Order of Leopold l

    Hi Overture, Thank you Yes, it is nice Commander Not many of those have been made I assume they were privately ordered with people with deep pockects Your GO Star by Fonson is very nice The display box is stunning
  10. Graf

    belgian Order of Leopold l

    The Belgium Medal makers have produced excellent quality Orders over the years, especially at the early period from 1832 till 1900. For some reasons few Orders have been made by French makers since the very beginning Here is my French Connection in my Belgium Order of Leopold Collection 1. 1/2 Size Knight with French mark -"rabbit" for Silver prior to 1839 2 Officer in 18 carat Gold with French "eagle head" mark 3. Officer in Silver Gild with French "boar head" mark for Silver and Maker Mark "VL" 4 Commander with French import mark "Ar950" for Silver and maker mark "AB" 5. Knight -not marked, however when compared with the Commander it is obvious that it could be the same maker
  11. Hi Pettypirate, Thank you for sharing this information. This can explain few things First that the Star is Original Second -The origin is most likely within the Kingdom of Serbia. The Model of the Star suggests that it was made during Prince/King Ferdinand period that mean in the period of around 1900 -1918 Your research has to be focused around your grandmother Did she or someone from the family work for someone who was an important person If not then the damaged pin system on the back can point to the theory that the Star must have beeen lost and she founded it That is more likely event, because it is very unlikely if she worked for someone who was of such rank to give his Star as a gift to her If The Star belonged to a Serbian VIP then information from archives in Serbia and Bulgaria can give you a clue I am not sure, however the Military Museum in Sofia might hold some information about the people awarded with this high level Orders The other direction is to research the High profile Serbians of this period and eventually identify the one/s awarded this rare Order Other option could be the Star belonged to a Non Serbian Dignity who visited the area your grandmother lived and lost it during the visit The research could be long and it is a good idea you decided to solve the story of this Star Best
  12. Hi, First a small information about the C.F Zimmermann marks The mark 20 of this Firm was mainly used on the German awards till the LDO was introduced in1941. After that the mark L/52 was used. The silver content was marked 800 or others depending of the quality of the Silver The Firm C>Zimmermann was known and was used by German Court and in WW2 Stages by Hitler to produce a very limited number of luxury top awards with or without Diamonds This Firm was used also by other Royal Courts around EUROPE for the same reasons The Bulgarian Royal Court of King Ferdinand and His son King Boris also used the Firm for the same reason. On those awards the Firm did not use the 20 and L/52 marks and instead used the mark with its name. Few of those Bulgarian Awards have been sold on the market in the last few years including the Sotherby's Auction in London on 7th of July 1998 where a significant part of Prince/King Ferdinand awards were sold I cannot judge the Star presented the member pettypirate without having a very close look of some details and/or hold the Star On first glance it looks Great, however on close inspection there are few points that puzzled me 1. The Condition of the Star There are only handful of those Stars awarded as Sets by the Bulgarian Monarchs to themselves and to other Royals and Dignities in Bulgaria and around the Europe. All of such Stars and Sets sold were in pristine condition because of the high value and the rareness of them Why this Star is in such bad condition?? 2. The central medallion must be in gold as of the other Stars If I am pettypirate I will check the quality of the Diamonds(if not already done} Those Stars had the highest quality of old rose cut Diamonds My major point is that I have seen few luxury Stars produced in Turkey using very poor quality stones 3. I also share the point of the other members regarding the Name, however the Firm could have used this name for its luxury models My question to pettypirate, if not secret, the Origin of the Star. If the Star was obtained within Serbia and is 100% Original then the VIP awarded it could be Serbian Royal or Dignity and his research has to be focused there.
  13. Graf

    early St. Alexander

    Hi Yankee, Do you mean the model with the swords directly attached to the cross It is very difficult to say whether it is copied or not Being rare model it can attract the attention of the wrong people. I have one and I have seen few more It looks like that there are to variations of this model Here they are One comes form Bulgarian Dealers the other(the second one - with more detailed swords on the back and no connetion on the mid point between the swords and the cross) comes mainly from Germany They are very early Prince Ferdinand emission by Rothe The design copy the model from the earlier Prince Alexander emission. Although I have seen only 4th and 5th Classes from Prince Alexander emission but not 6th Class
  14. I just spotted this 2nd Class of The Order for Military merit on ebay.de The Cross is OK, however the Star looks very strange In my opinion it is one of those Stars with new enamel and someone tried ti age it and something went utterly wrong Judge by yourself Best
  15. Set sold for only 1600 Euro The same price was for the single Star It looks like the Set did not attract serious buyers