a. The period between sunset and sunrise, especially the hours of darkness.
b. This period considered as a unit of time: for two nights running.
c. This period considered from its conditions: a rainy night.
2. The period between dusk and midnight of a given day: either late Thursday night or early Friday morning.
a. The period between evening and bedtime.
b. This period considered from its activities: a night at the opera.
c. This period set aside for a specific purpose: Parents' Night at school.
a. The period between bedtime and morning: spent the night at a motel.
b. One's sleep during this period: had a restless night.
5. Nightfall: worked from morning to night.
6. Darkness: vanished into the night.
a. A time or condition of gloom, obscurity, ignorance, or despair: "In a real dark night of the soul it is always three o'clock in the morning" (F. Scott Fitzgerald).
b. A time or condition marked by absence of moral or ethical values: "He never would have let us go untroubled into the night of private greed" (Anthony Lewis).
1. Of or relating to the night: the night air.
2. Intended for use at night: a night light.
3. Working during the night: the night nurse.
4. Active chiefly at night: night prowlers.
5. Occurring after dark: night baseball.
[Middle English, from Old English niht; see nekw-t- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.
American Heritage Dictionary Products
The American Heritage Dictionary, 5th Edition
The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms
The American Heritage Roget's Thesaurus
Curious George's Dictionary
The American Heritage Children's Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
The American Heritage Student Grammar Dictionary
The American Heritage Desk Dictionary + Thesaurus
The American Heritage Science Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Business Terms
The American Heritage Student Dictionary
The American Heritage Essential Student Thesaurus