noun, often attributive
twi·​light | \ ˈtwī-ˌlīt How to pronounce twilight (audio) \

Definition of twilight

1 : the light from the sky between full night and sunrise or between sunset and full night produced by diffusion of sunlight through the atmosphere and its dust also : a time of twilight
2a : an intermediate state that is not clearly defined lived in the twilight of neutralityNewsweek
b : a period of decline

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Examples of twilight in a Sentence

The sun set and twilight fell. stumbled around the twilight of the shuttered room, unable to see where she was going
Recent Examples on the Web But even during that conflict's long twilight struggle, the U.S. and U.S.S.R. were able to negotiate arms-control agreements. Star Tribune, "U.S.-Russia treaty on nukes provides critical security," 1 Feb. 2021 In the twilight of his extremely short tenure, the sixth and final person to the hold the office of Secretary of Defense under President Donald J. Trump had some pretty strong words to say about the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Outgoing Secretary of Defense Thinks the F-35 Is a "Piece of..."," 20 Jan. 2021 Trump’s removal from office in the twilight of his presidency. Zachary Halaschak, Washington Examiner, "Patriots coach Bill Belichick declines Presidential Medal of Freedom from Trump after Capitol siege," 11 Jan. 2021 Many are choosing the latter, moving to new cities or pausing or ending work in its twilight to help their children maintain careers—or just a semblance of sanity. Rachel Feintzeig, WSJ, "The Grandparents Who Dropped Everything to Help Out During Covid," 28 Dec. 2020 Find an unobstructed horizon in the direction of sunset, and look for these two worlds to pop out into the evening twilight as dusk ebbs into darkness. Todd Nelson, Star Tribune, "Plowable Snowfall Likely By Friday Night," 13 Jan. 2021 Given the timing of this development—in the blessed twilight of the Trump presidency—a reader might be tempted to see in it a conscious turning away from the horrors of the past four years toward somewhat lighter fare. Christopher Beha, Harpers Magazine, "A Novel Approach," 5 Jan. 2021 In this twilight of Britain’s membership in the most successful of postwar trading blocs, no assessment can avoid a reference to the credentials of whoever is making it. New York Times, "The Brexit Fight, Through a Reporter’s Prism of a Changed Continent," 26 Dec. 2020 Many, such as Judith Krovetz of Boynton Beach, are wistful for what feels like a year robbed from the twilight of their lives. Tribune News Service, al, "Fear, sadness, loneliness: South Florida’s seniors spent most of 2020 locked away," 3 Jan. 2021

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

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First Known Use of twilight

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for twilight

Time Traveler

The first known use of twilight was in the 15th century

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Statistics for twilight

Last Updated

12 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Twilight.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
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More Definitions for twilight



English Language Learners Definition of twilight

: the light from the sky at the end of the day when night is just beginning
: the period when day is ending and night is beginning
: a period when something is ending


twi·​light | \ ˈtwī-ˌlīt How to pronounce twilight (audio) \

Kids Definition of twilight

1 : the period or the light from the sky between full night and sunrise or between sunset and full night
2 : a period of decline She is in the twilight of her career.

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