A hall of fame (German: Walhalla) is a structure housing memorials to famous or illustrious individuals usually chosen by a group of electors. The meaning of "Fame" has changed over the years, originally meaning "renown" as opposed to today's more common meaning of "celebrity".
In some cases, these halls of fame consist of actual halls or museums which enshrine the honorees with sculptures, plaques, and displays of memorabilia. Sometimes, the honorees' plaques may instead be posted on a wall (a '"wall of fame" right) or inscribed on a sidewalk (a "walk of fame" or an "avenue of fame"). In others, the hall of fame is more figurative, and just simply consists of a list of names of noteworthy individuals maintained by an organization or community.
The English-language term was popularised in the United States by the Hall of Fame for Great Americans at Bronx Community College, in New York City, completed in 1900. Its inspiration, the Ruhmeshalle in Munich, Germany, also means "Hall of Fame". The Walhalla Temple in Bavaria, Germany, is an even earlier hall of fame, conceived in 1807 and built between 1830 and 1842.
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- R. Rubin (1997). "The Mall of Fame". The Atlantic Monthly 280 (1): 14–18.
- ↑ Rubin (1997), p.14.