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Any ideas on the proper use of this utensil?  Appears to be bone handle, no hallmarks with the exception of what appears to be the letter GU near the handle.  Very detailed, four-tine (prong), bent-tip fork, which appears to be silverplate.  Overall length is 6".

Thank you!

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Replies to This Discussion

Hi Michelle, I would say it's a serving fork for either meat or fish, or possibly sardines.

Is the handle Ivory? And, have you checked on the id links above to see if you can locate the GU marking?

If that is Ivory or bone, it may be of Asian origin. Ivory is cool to the touch and has lots of "specks" Bone is very similar, but generally does not have the "coolness" to it.

Plastic/Bakelite has a very different feel. If you can't tell, you might want to do a hot pin test in a place that won't be damaging to the piece. Ivory and bone are very hard and the hot pin will not go into it.

Hi Vicki,

Thanks for helping.  I believe it is victorian, so don't think it is plastic or bakelite, doesn't appear to be ivory, is more yellowed on the underside.   I was thinking sardine fork however the tines seem a little longer and because they have a slight bend to the tips,  the tine on the far left is wider than the others and the etchings are a real nice touch.

Thanks again, have a great evening,


It appears to be one of either: a Cake Fork or an Oyster Fork.

The GU is George Unite, Birmingham, England, from c1832 onward. He was mainly producing silver wine labels for bottles, but your piece does carry his mark. 

You may wish to Google search George Unite for more information.

Hope this helps?

That is awesome, thank you Colin.  The problem with delving into numerous items is that you don't become an expert on them!  lol

Thanks so much, will be adding to my ebay store shortly!

Valuable and appreciated information!



Haaa - I am no expert. Truly I'm not. I know a thing or two about European glass in particular and Art Deco,  but that's about it!  It's only by chance that I recall the name George Unite... Sometimes, luck is on our side! lol



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