Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The night of November 9, 1938, on which the Nazis coordinated an attack on Jewish people and their property in Germany and German-controlled lands.

Etymologies

German, night of (broken) glass : Kristall, crystal (from Middle High German, from Old High German cristalla, from Latin crystallus, crystallum; see crystal) + Nacht, night (from Middle High German naht, from Old High German; see nekw-t- in Indo-European roots).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • Kristallnacht is German for "the night of crystal."

    Israel At Level Ground

  • To compare it to Kristallnacht is historically inaccurate and inflammatory.

    The Volokh Conspiracy » Massive Problems with Anti-Obama Allegations That Have Been Making the Rounds Recently

  • “Today the evidence of an ecological Kristallnacht is as clear as the sound of glass shattering in Berlin,” Gore wrote.

    Think Progress » Sen. Inhofe Compares People Who Believe In Global Warming To ‘The Third Reich’

  • BERLIN - Germany's president has inaugurated a new synagogue on the anniversary of the 1938 Nazi anti-Jewish pogrom that was known as "Kristallnacht," or the "Night of Broken Glass."

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • The name Kristallnacht, strictly translated from the German "crystal night" refers to actually two evenings of shattered glass across the region.

    The Full Feed from HuffingtonPost.com

  • It was called Kristallnacht, Crystal Night, because it happened at night and a lot of plate glass was broken, and because the word “crystal” simultaneously distracted from, and raised a toast to, the ferociousness of the rioting—and perhaps finally also because the word echoed the title of one of Goebbels’s favorite books on propaganda technique, Edward Bernays’s Crystallizing Public Opinion.

    Human Smoke

  • The play's title refers to Kristallnacht, it's set in 1938, and it solves the mystery of why Sylvia has lost the use of her legs: Thanks to these dazzling performances, you can just about accept Miller's slightly humorless conclusion, conveyed in typical bravura fashion by Mr. Sher, that her illness is caused by the Hitler that lurks inside every impotent, self-hating Jewish husband.

    The Witty Bits of a Play

  • And on the Nazi anti-Semitic pogrom known as Kristallnacht, this is what the newspaper had to say:

    Kamran Pasha: Yale and the Danish Cartoons

  • The pogroms of November 9 and 10, 1938 were called Kristallnacht (the Night of Broken Glass), because the broken glass from damaged houses, shops and synagogues littered the streets in almost every German city or town.

    Central Organizations of Jews in Germany (1933-1943).

  • Later, this horrible night of terror would be called Kristallnacht, or the "Night of Broken Glass" because of the constant sound of the shattered storefront windows of the Jewish-owned businesses.

    Danny Miller: Kristallnacht: 70 Years Later

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