Nippon Backstamps and Known Dates of Manufacture

We get a lot of questions about Nippon backstamps and dates of manufacture. Unfortunately, we are not experts, but we always turn to a wonderful book by someone who is for our information.  Joan Van Patten has written many books on collecting antique Nippon porcelain, and she has compiled known dates for certain backstamps. We are sharing a small list here (with pictures) of the ones we have come across in our Nippon journeys.  We hope this helps those out there looking for this information quickly.

We cannot stress enough that this is NOT a complete list.  You will need to pick up one of Joan Van Patten’s books in order to get all the information you need.  If you know any dates for a backstamp not shown here, feel free to leave the information in the comments. Information about each mark is below the picture.

UPDATE 1/4/12: We’ve added more backstamps to this post!  

UPDATE 2/20/12: Even more backstamps have been added to the list!

If you are having a problem identifying a Nippon mark, feel free to use this link to contact us through eBay & we’ll be happy to help you as much as we can.  Sorry – we can’t leave our email address here – there’s just too many spam bots.  Please have a CLEAR picture of the mark & of the item so you can email it to us, we cannot go by written descriptions since there are over 350 known Nippon marks.

“M in Wreath”, M stands for Morimura Bros. (importers).  Mark used since 1911.  Found in green (shown), blue, magenta, and gold colors.  Van Patten’s #47

“Maple Leaf Nippon”, dates back to 1891.  Found in green, blue (shown) & magenta.  Van Patten’s #52.  This mark should be 1/4″ high.  Known fake Maple Leaf backstamps are 1/2″ high.

“Noritake Nippon”, used on blank pieces (undecorated) for export.  Dates from 1911.  Found in green, blue (shown), and magenta.  Note that this mark has the artist’s signature underneath.  Van Patten’s #68.

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