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Definition of "vigil" []

  • A watch kept during normal sleeping hours. (noun)
  • The act or a period of observing; surveillance. (noun)
  • The eve of a religious festival observed by staying awake as a devotional exercise. (noun)
  • Ritual devotions observed on the eve of a holy day. Often used in the plural. (noun)
  • A purposeful watch maintained, esp at night, to guard, observe, pray, etc (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • The period of such a watch (noun)
  • The eve of certain major festivals, formerly observed as a night spent in prayer: often marked by fasting and abstinence and a special Mass and divine office (noun)
  • A period of sleeplessness; insomnia (noun)

www.Collinsdictionary.com (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "vigil" in a sentence
  • "The reform of Pope Pius XII did not in fact restore the Easter vigil to its proper historical time after None, since it mandated that the vigil is to start at such an hour that the actual Mass will begin around midnight."
  • "As noted in the article on the Mass of Holy Saturday, the Easter vigil, is not a first Mass of the Resurrection; it is a vigil, a keeping watch."
  • "The proper hour for the celebration of the Easter vigil is also traditionally after None, as in all the ferial days of Lent."