Night
Night Night (n[imac]t), n. [OE. night, niht, AS. neaht, niht; akin to D. nacht, OS. & OHG. naht, G. nacht, Icel. n[=o]tt, Sw. natt, Dan. nat, Goth. nahts, Lith. naktis, Russ. noche, W. nos, Ir. nochd, L. nox, noctis, Gr. ny`x, nykto`s, Skr. nakta, nakti. [root]265. Cf. {Equinox}, {Nocturnal}.] 1. That part of the natural day when the sun is beneath the horizon, or the time from sunset to sunrise; esp., the time between dusk and dawn, when there is no light of the sun, but only moonlight, starlight, or artificial light. [1913 Webster]

And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. --Gen. i. 5. [1913 Webster]

2. Hence: (a) Darkness; obscurity; concealment. [1913 Webster]

Nature and nature's laws lay hid in night. --Pope. [1913 Webster] (b) Intellectual and moral darkness; ignorance. (c) A state of affliction; adversity; as, a dreary night of sorrow. (d) The period after the close of life; death. [1913 Webster]

She closed her eyes in everlasting night. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

Do not go gentle into that good night Rage, rage against the dying of the light. --Dylan Thomas. [PJC] (e) A lifeless or unenlivened period, as when nature seems to sleep. ``Sad winter's night''. --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

Note: Night is sometimes used, esp. with participles, in the formation of self-explaining compounds; as, night-blooming, night-born, night-warbling, etc. [1913 Webster]

{Night by night}, {Night after night}, nightly; many nights. [1913 Webster]

So help me God, as I have watched the night, Ay, night by night, in studying good for England. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

{Night bird}. (Zo["o]l.) (a) The moor hen ({Gallinula chloropus}). (b) The Manx shearwater ({Puffinus Anglorum}).

{Night blindness}. (Med.) See {Hemeralopia}.

{Night cart}, a cart used to remove the contents of privies by night.

{Night churr}, (Zo["o]l.), the nightjar.

{Night crow}, a bird that cries in the night.

{Night dog}, a dog that hunts in the night, -- used by poachers.

{Night fire}. (a) Fire burning in the night. (b) Ignis fatuus; Will-o'-the-wisp; Jask-with-a-lantern.

{Night flyer} (Zo["o]l.), any creature that flies in the night, as some birds and insects.

{night glass}, a spyglass constructed to concentrate a large amount of light, so as see objects distinctly at night. --Totten.

{Night green}, iodine green.

{Night hag}, a witch supposed to wander in the night.

{Night hawk} (Zo["o]l.), an American bird ({Chordeiles Virginianus}), allied to the goatsucker. It hunts the insects on which it feeds toward evening, on the wing, and often, diving down perpendicularly, produces a loud whirring sound, like that of a spinning wheel. Also sometimes applied to the European goatsuckers. It is called also {bull bat}.

{Night heron} (Zo["o]l.), any one of several species of herons of the genus {Nycticorax}, found in various parts of the world. The best known species is {Nycticorax griseus}, or {Nycticorax nycticorax}, of Europe, and the American variety (var. n[ae]vius). The yellow-crowned night heron ({Nyctanassa violacea} syn. {Nycticorax violaceus}) inhabits the Southern States. Called also {qua-bird}, and {squawk}.

{Night house}, a public house, or inn, which is open at night.

{Night key}, a key for unfastening a night latch.

{Night latch}, a kind of latch for a door, which is operated from the outside by a key.

{Night monkey} (Zo["o]l.), an owl monkey.

{night moth} (Zo["o]l.), any one of the noctuids.

{Night parrot} (Zo["o]l.), the kakapo.

{Night piece}, a painting representing some night scene, as a moonlight effect, or the like.

{Night rail}, a loose robe, or garment, worn either as a nightgown, or over the dress at night, or in sickness. [Obs.]

{Night raven} (Zo["o]l.), a bird of ill omen that cries in the night; esp., the bittern.

{Night rule}. (a) A tumult, or frolic, in the night; -- as if a corruption, of night revel. [Obs.] (b) Such conduct as generally rules, or prevails, at night.

What night rule now about this haunted grove? --Shak.

{Night sight}. (Med.) See {Nyctolopia}.

{Night snap}, a night thief. [Cant] --Beau. & Fl.

{Night soil}, human excrement; -- so called because in cities it is collected by night and carried away for manure.

{Night spell}, a charm against accidents at night.

{Night swallow} (Zo["o]l.), the nightjar.

{Night walk}, a walk in the evening or night.

{Night walker}. (a) One who walks in his sleep; a somnambulist; a noctambulist. (b) One who roves about in the night for evil purposes; specifically, a prostitute who walks the streets.

{Night walking}. (a) Walking in one's sleep; sleep walking; somnambulism; noctambulism. (b) Walking the streets at night with evil designs.

{Night warbler} (Zo["o]l.), the sedge warbler ({Acrocephalus phragmitis}); -- called also {night singer}. [Prov. Eng.]

{Night watch}. (a) A period in the night, as distinguished by the change of watch. (b) A watch, or guard, to aford protection in the night.

{Night watcher}, one who watches in the night; especially, one who watches with evil designs.

{Night witch}. Same as {Night hag}, above. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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  • night — (n.) O.E. niht (W.Saxon neaht, Anglian næht, neht) night, darkness; the vowel indicating that the modern word derives from oblique cases (gen. nihte, dat. niht), from P.Gmc. *nakht (Cf. O.S., O.H.G. naht, O.Fris., Du., nacht, Ger. Nacht, O.N.… …   Etymology dictionary

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  • night — [n] part of day after sundown and before sunrise after dark, after hours*, bedtime, before dawn, black*, blackness, dark, dark hours, darkness, dead of night*, dim, duskiness, dusk to dawn, evening, eventide, gloom, midnight, nightfall, nighttide …   New thesaurus

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