noun, often attributive
night·​time | \ ˈnīt-ˌtīm How to pronounce nighttime (audio) \

Definition of nighttime

: the time from dusk to dawn

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for nighttime


dark, darkness, night


day, daytime

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of nighttime in a Sentence

The animal hunts in the nighttime. before electricity, gas lamps were used for illumination during the nighttime

Recent Examples on the Web

And then, in 1998, in another attempt to boost TV ratings, the race was moved to nighttime. Mike Bianchi,, "Rain-postponed Coke Zero Sugar 400 is proof that Fourth of July racing in Daytona lost its identity years ago | Commentary," 6 July 2019 Prowling the nighttime Everglades for giant constricting snakes may not sound like the world’s safest activity. David Fleshler,, "During the day, these women groom dogs. At night they kill pythons," 28 June 2019 Some people may find that washing with an actual cleanser twice a day is too much and prefer to just use cold water, micellar water, or a mild cleanser in the morning, saving their more intense cleansers with active ingredients for nighttime. Sara Coughlin, SELF, "Is Double Cleansing Truly Worth Your Precious Time?," 1 May 2019 And here’s the amazing part: His nighttime sleeping has changed, too. Lindsey Benoit O’connell, Good Housekeeping, "I Hired a Baby Sleep Coach, But It Turns Out I Was The One Who Needed Training," 3 May 2019 Charming pagodas and bridges peek out behind a great mass of undulating trees, whether in the daylight colors of Emerald or the nighttime Indigo. Jesse Dorris, House Beautiful, "In Bloom: Beacon Hill's New Midnight Garden Collection," 15 May 2013 My new nighttime skin-care favorite contains peptides and botanicals to improve blood flow and reduce puffiness. Tiffany Dodson, SELF, "Ulta Is Having a 50 Percent Off Sale on Skin-Care—Here’s Everything I Want," 18 Jan. 2019 In Arctic Europe, the swing is roughly 20 hours, leaving plenty of nighttime to stew about it. Valentina Pop, WSJ, "What Time Is It in Europe? Soon, the Answer Might Be Really Confusing," 18 Oct. 2018 The virus, called canine distemper, causes raccoons to leave their traditional habitats—trees, garbage cans, nighttime—and venture into the human domain, often in a crazed, disoriented or wobbly state. Corinne Ramey, WSJ, "The Latest Scourge of Central Park: ‘Zombie’ Raccoons," 12 Aug. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of nighttime

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about nighttime

Statistics for nighttime

Last Updated

16 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for nighttime

The first known use of nighttime was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for nighttime



English Language Learners Definition of nighttime

: the time of darkness between one day and the next : the time of day when no light from the sun can be seen


night·​time | \ ˈnīt-ˌtīm How to pronounce nighttime (audio) \

Kids Definition of nighttime



Legal Definition of nighttime

1 : the time from dusk to dawn
2 : a statutorily set period usually beginning shortly after dusk and ending shortly after dawn

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on nighttime

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


food or victuals

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


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!