1721. hall + mark, from Goldsmiths' Hall in London, the site of the assay office, official stamp of purity in gold and silver articles. The general sense of "mark of quality" first recorded 1864. Use as a verb from 1773.
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈhɔlmɑɹk/
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈhɔːlmɑːk/
Audio (Southern England) (file)
hallmark (plural hallmarks)
- A distinguishing characteristic.
- 2011 February 1, Phil McNulty, “Arsenal 2 - 1 Everton”, in BBC:
- Arsene Wenger's side showed little of the style and fluidity that is their hallmark but this was about digging deep and getting the job done, qualities they demonstrated and that will serve them well as the season reaches its climax.
- An official marking made by a trusted party, usually an assay office, on items made of precious metals.
- 2007, John Zerzan John, Silence:
- It can highlight our embodiment, a qualitative step away from the hallmark machines that work so resolutely to disembody us.
- To provide or stamp with a hallmark.