noun \ ˈnīt \
|Updated on: 14 Jul 2018

Definition of night

1 : the time from dusk to dawn when no sunlight is visible
  • The store is open all night.
2 a : an evening or night taken as an occasion or point of time
  • the opening night
b : an evening set aside for a particular purpose
  • Thursdays is game night in our house.
3 a : the quality or state of being dark
  • approached the enemy's camp under cover of night
b : a condition or period felt to resemble the darkness of night: such as
(1) : a period of dreary inactivity or affliction
  • the glories of Roman civilization were lost in a gloomy night of ignorance, superstition, and barbarism
  • —R. A. Hall
(2) : absence of moral values
  • … that night which has for many centuries obscured our holy religion …
  • —Joseph Priestley
c : the beginning of darkness : nightfall
  • worked in the fields until night


play \ˈnīt-ləs\ adjective

Examples of night in a Sentence

  1. Who are you calling at this time of night?

  2. It's eleven o'clock at night.

  3. She and her husband both work at night and sleep during the day.

  4. The store's open all night.

  5. They were up all night long playing video games.

  6. Let's stop for the night and get a hotel.

  7. a cold, rainy night in the city

  8. I stayed up late five nights in a row.

  9. Last night, I had the strangest dream.

  10. Spend six nights and seven days on a tropical island in the Caribbean!

Recent Examples of night from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'night.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of night

Middle English night, niht, going back to Old English nieht, niht, umlauted form of neaht, næht, going back to Germanic *naht- (whence Old Saxon & Old High German naht "night," Old Norse nótt, nátt, Gothic nahts), going back to Indo-European *nokw-t-, whence Old Irish innocht "tonight," Welsh peunoeth "every night" (Welsh nos "night" perhaps going back to *nokwt-stu-), Latin noct-, nox "night," Old Church Slavic noštĭ, Lithuanian naktìs, Greek nykt-, nýx, Sanskrit nakt-, nak, Hittite nekuz "in the evening" (from an oblique case stem *nekwt-)

Other Calendar Terms




Definition of night

1 : of, relating to, or associated with the night
  • night air
2 : intended for use at night
  • a night lamp
3 a : existing, occurring, or functioning at night
  • night baseball
  • a night nurse
b : active or functioning best at night
  • night people

Examples of night in a Sentence

  1. He is taking a night flight.

  2. a night manager at the supermarket

  3. This is the last night bus.

Origin and Etymology of night

attributive use of 1night

night Synonyms


daily, diurnal;

Near Antonyms


Related Words


midnight, overnight;

NIGHT Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of night for English Language Learners

  • : the time of darkness between one day and the next : the part of the day when no light from the sun can be seen and most people and animals sleep

  • : the darkness that occurs during the nighttime

  • : the final part of the day that is usually after work, school, etc., and before you go to bed : the early part of the night


Definition of night for English Language Learners

  • : of or relating to the night

  • : for use at night

  • : happening at night

NIGHT Defined for Kids


noun \ ˈnīt \

Definition of night for Students

1 : the time between dusk and dawn when there is no sunlight
2 : the early part of the night : nightfall
  • We go bowling every Friday night.
3 : the darkness of night
  • His eyes were black as night.

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up night? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


peaceful, happy, or prosperous

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Test Your Emoji Exceptionalism

  • test-your-emoji-exceptionalism-written-with-a-lot-of-emoji
  • What is this emoji intended to represent: 🤳
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!