Post by Mack A. Damia
"Apologies to J.J. Lodder"
Accepted of course, but not really needed.
It really was a tricky question.
This whole discussion is a fine example
of what Flaubert called 'les idees recu'. 
Like absinthe being extremely poisonous, causing madness even,
since 'everybody' knew so. (one of his examples)
Some things are 'true' because everyone says so,
and because 'everyone' -says- that they are a (scientific) fact.
Like the sun turning araound the earth, or silver...
Others are true because because they really are a 'scientific fact'
Like a perpetuum mobile being impossible.
All fine, but how do you see the difference?
This is one of the places where a genius or an inventor may step in.
Like the Wright brothers, ignoring, or not knowing about 'proofs'
that powered flight must be impossible.
Or Mr Gerritsen, ignoring communis opinio that
pure siver cannot have any practical uses beyond ingots, medals, etc.
BTW, I have never held any 999 silver in my hands,
I just happen to know that it exists.
The fate of those brave pioneers who dare to ignore 'les idees recu'
Some become famous, or rich, others are forgotten.
At least Gerritsen managed to keep his factory in business with it,
for another decade at least.
You may have noticed I have been doing just the same:
anything called 'reactionless drive' or 'free energy' is nonsense,
even when experimental verification is claimed.
BTW, jumping back, not just silver, all kinds of antiques are 'out'.
Shops are closing all over the place, or are marginally hanging on,
hoping for better times.
If you want to buy Dutch antiques this is the time,
 Flaubert's Dictionaire des Idees Recus has much in common
with Ambrose Bierce's Devil's dictionary.
Bierce just ridicuculed, Flaubert ridiculed by pretending
wholehearted agreement, and by exaggeration.
Post by Mack A. Damia
This message receved this morning from Mr. Dennis Van Kampen, Silver
Dear Mr Procter,
Thank you for question. In the 2nd half of the 20th century the Dutch
firm Gerritsen has invented a process to make silver cutlery with
(almost) pure silver (999/1000). So these 999/1000 silver cutlery sets
do exist, but are not as common as 925/1000 or 835/1000 cutlery sets.
I assume this is the case, because they are less durable (softer
I don´t think there will be a problem with knives with silver filled
handles though, because often the silver handles are filled (with
cement or resin) and have a steel core of the blade.
Please see this lot for example for spoons, forks and knives marked
with 999: https://veiling.catawiki.nl/kavels/19974219
I hope to have informed you sufficiently.
Met vriendelijke groet / Kind regards,
Dennis van Kampen
Zilverexpert / Silver Expert