Definition of hallmark in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈhôlˌmärk/


1A mark stamped on articles of gold, silver, or platinum in Britain, certifying their standard of purity.
Example sentences
  • This is to be an appeal against the proposal by Italy for the abandonment of hallmarks on gold and silver throughout the EU.
  • He listed the weight of silver, the hallmarks and commented on the quality of the workmanship.
  • Also included is a section titled ‘Who's Who in the House of Faberge,’ giving the workmasters, the companies, and their hallmarks and other stamps.
assay mark, official mark, stamp of authenticity
1.1A distinctive feature, especially one of excellence: the tiny bubbles are the hallmark of fine champagnes
More example sentences
  • Intellectual consistency is the hallmark of a fine legal mind.
  • They may not be the best hurling team around but they have some fine players and the hallmark of their play is honest endeavour.
  • A true coffee lover knows that the hallmark of a truly fine establishment is the free refill.
mark, distinctive feature, characteristic, sign, sure sign, telltale sign, badge, stamp, trademark, indication, indicator, calling card
informal X factor


[with object]
1Stamp with a hallmark.
Example sentences
  • For 700 years - let me repeat that for 700 years we have had a system for hallmarking precious metals.
  • The phone is hallmarked by the Swiss Assay office.
  • The Carriage Office continues to license taxis and hackneys in the city and the Assay Office, which hallmarks genuine silver artifacts, also perpetuates a centuries old tradition.
1.1Designate as distinctive, especially for excellence.
Example sentences
  • The brand personality is consistently hallmarked by individuality, innovation, competence and non-conformism.
  • Retrocalcaneal bursitis is a distinct entity hallmarked by pain that is anterior to the Achilles tendon and just superior to its insertion on the os calcis.
  • So if you fancy black silk sheets hallmarked with the name of your house, or silk organza drapes emblazoned with unicorns - all you have to do is ask.


Early 18th century (as a noun): from Goldsmiths' Hall in London, England, where articles were tested and stamped with such a mark.

  • Articles made of gold, silver, or platinum have been taken to Goldsmiths' Hall in London to be tested since the Middle Ages, and then stamped with a mark to guarantee purity. This was the original hallmark. Goldsmiths' Hall is the home of the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths, one of the traditional Livery Companies of the City of London.

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Syllabification: hall·mark

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