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"Memorabilia" redirects here. For other uses, see Memorabilia (disambiguation).
For other uses, see Souvenir (disambiguation).
Eiffel Tower souvenirs
A souvenir stall in London, England

A souvenir (from French, for a remembrance or memory),[1] memento, keepsake, or token of remembrance[1] is an object a person acquires for the memories the owner associates with it. A souvenir can be any object that can be collected or purchased and transported home by the traveler as a memento of a visit. While there is no set minimum or maximum cost that one is required to adhere to when purchasing a souvenir, etiquette would suggest to keep it within a monetary amount that the receiver would not feel uncomfortable with when presented the souvenir. The object itself may have intrinsic value, or simply be a symbol of past experience. Without the owner's input, the symbolic meaning is invisible and cannot be articulated.[2]

As objects[edit]

The tourism industry designates tourism souvenirs as commemorative merchandise associated with a location, often including geographic information and usually produced in a manner that promotes souvenir collecting.

Hand-carved wood souvenirs for sale in Chichén Itzá, Yucatán, Mexico.

Throughout the world, the souvenir trade is an important part of the tourism industry serving a dual role, first to help improve the local economy, and second to allow visitors to take with them a memento of their visit, ultimately to encourage an opportunity for a return visit, or to promote the locale to other tourists as a form of word-of-mouth marketing.[3] Perhaps the most collected souvenirs by tourists are photographs as a medium to document specific events and places for future reference.[2]

Souvenirs as objects include mass-produced merchandise such as clothing: T-shirts and hats; collectables: postcards, refrigerator magnets, miniature figures; household items: mugs, bowls, plates, ashtrays, egg timers, spoons, notepads, plus many others.

Souvenirs also include non-mass-produced items like folk art, local artisan handicrafts, objects that represent the traditions and culture of the area, non-commercial, natural objects like sand from a beach, and anything else that a person attaches nostalgic value to and collects among his personal belongings.[4]

A more grisly form of souvenir in the First World War was displayed by a Pathan soldier to an English Territorial. After carefully studying the Tommy's acquisitions (a fragment of shell, a spike and badge from a German helmet), he produced a cord with the ears of enemy soldiers he claimed to have killed. He was keeping them to take back to India for his wife.[5]

As memorabilia[edit]

Souvenir Album of Houston, 1891

Similar to souvenirs, memorabilia (Latin for memorable (things), plural of memorābile) are objects treasured for their memories or historical interest; however, unlike souvenirs, memorabilia can be valued for a connection to an event or a particular professional field, company or brand.

Examples include sporting events, historical events, culture, and entertainment. Such items include: clothing; game equipment; publicity photographs and posters; magic memorabilia; other entertainment-related merchandise & memorabilia; movie memorabilia; airline[6][7] and other transportation-related memorabilia; and pins, among others.

Often memorabilia items are kept in protective covers or display cases to safeguard and preserve their condition.

As gifts[edit]

In Japan, souvenirs are known as omiyage (お土産?), and are frequently selected from meibutsu, or products associated with a particular region. Bringing back omiyage from trips to co-workers and families is a social obligation, and can be considered a form of apology for the traveller's absence.[8] Omiyage sales are big business at Japanese tourist sites.

Travelers may buy souvenirs as gifts for those who did not make the trip.

In the Philippines a similar tradition of bringing souvenirs as a gift to family members, friends, and coworkers is called pasalubong.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Online Etymology Dictionary". etymonline.com. 
  2. ^ a b "Museum of the personal: the souvenir and nostalgia". byte-time.net. 
  3. ^ Niu, Jiurong (February 2010). The Design and Development of Tourist Souvenirs in Henan (PDF). International Symposium on Tourism Resources and Management. pp. 329–332. Retrieved 17 April 2016. 
  4. ^ "About me". Souvenir Finder. 
  5. ^ Reagan, Geoffrey: Military Anecdotes (1992), Guinness Publishing, p. 20, ISBN 0-85112-519-0
  6. ^ "Aviation and Airline Memorabilia". Collectors Weekly. 
  7. ^ "airline memorabilia - Bing". bing.com. 
  8. ^ "Omiyage Gift Purchasing By Japanese Travelers in the U.S.". acrwebsite.org. 

External link[edit]

Media related to Souvenirs at Wikimedia Commons

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Souvenir — Please support Wikipedia.
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Music video by Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark performing Souvenir. (P) 1981 The copyright in this audiovisual recording is owned by Virgin Records Ltd.

OMD - Souvenir


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Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo put the Ding in Dinger with their new business, Bryzzo Souvenir Company #THIS Check out http://m.mlb.com/video for our full ...


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Hola amigos me llamo Ally pero soy RinguitaStarr me aburri del nombre no es por que ya no me guste The beatles aun me gusta pero quiero algo mas serio ...

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575592 news items

Racked NY

Racked NY
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 11:56:15 -0700

Today Urban Outfitters introduced the UO Souvenir Shop selling — well, take a guess. But this isn't your average I Heart New York T-shirt fare. Instead, the trendy retailer has stocked its shop-in-shop with a collection of keepsakes inspired by the ...

Jacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars
Tue, 26 Apr 2016 07:47:56 -0700

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville Jaguars today announced that a limited number of souvenir club seats will be available for purchase. Fans interested in taking home a piece of EverBank Field history can visit www.jaguars.com/souvenirseats to get ...

WDIV Detroit

WDIV Detroit
Wed, 27 Apr 2016 10:48:18 -0700

TROY, Mich. - A 90-year-old woman's home was broken into and even souvenir mortars from World War II wired around the safe did not stop the bad guy. Police believe she was targeted because of her age. She lives next to Troy Athens High School.


Wed, 27 Apr 2016 04:26:15 -0700

Never underestimate the power of a simple shrimp cocktail sauce to get a party going. This spicy sauce is made with two kinds of hot sauce mixed together and is ready for shrimp cocktail dipping or oyster topping. LYNN KESSEL. BY LYNN KESSEL

Racked NY

Racked NY
Wed, 13 Apr 2016 11:33:45 -0700

On the flip side, residency has afforded me close to three decades of fluid anthropological observation of New York's souvenir T-shirt culture, and I've come up with a ranking of the tees you're most likely to encounter on street level, graded from ...

Linn's Stamp News

Linn's Stamp News
Wed, 20 Apr 2016 08:04:14 -0700

Royal Mail's souvenir sheet celebrating the 90th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II on April 21 shows four generations of the queen's family: her son Prince Charles, the queen, her great grandson Prince George, and her grandson Prince William. Ranald ...
Broadway World
Fri, 22 Apr 2016 13:43:25 -0700

Take a piece of Broadway home with you with the official Broadway Up Close Walking Tour ACT I Souvenir Book. With over 100 rarely seen photos, 48 full-color pages and all of the tour's ghost stories, anecdotes and other wonderful tales, Broadway ...

New York Times

New York Times
Sat, 09 Apr 2016 08:11:15 -0700

A silvered box with a glass top containing a piece of cake from Queen Victoria's wedding party. Credit Fred R. Conrad for The New York Times. Now that wedding season is once again upon us, it's worth noting that the Brooklyn Museum boasts a kind of ...

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