Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An overnight stay; action (or instance) of abiding through the night at a location.
  • n. The action (or an instance) of walking about at night, especially as a vigil or watch.
  • n. A religious watch kept during normal sleeping hours, during which prayers or other ceremonies are performed.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act or state of passing the whole night; a remaining all night.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A passing the night in sleeplessness or in watching or prayer; a vigil lasting all night; specifically, in the early Christian ch., a religious vigil held through the entire night immediately previous to a given festival.
  • n. A staying out all night.

Etymologies

From Late Latin pernoctātiō ("a spending the night"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • The act of staying up all night; an all-night vigil.

    May 12, 2008