The use of identity marks on products declined following the fall of the Roman Empire. However, in the Middle Ages with the rise of the merchant 's guilds , the use of marks resurfaced and was typically associated with specific types of goods. By the 13th century, the use of maker's marks was evident on a broad range of goods. In 1266, makers' marks on bread became compulsory.  The Italians used brands in the form of watermarks on paper in the 13th century.  Blind Stamps , hallmarks , and silver-makers' marks, all types of brand, became widely used across Europe during the this period. Hallmarks, although known from the 4th-century, especially in Byzantium,  only fell into general use during the Medieval period.  Hallmarks for silver and gold were introduced in Britain in 1300.